Gravitational and non-gravitational energy: the need for background structures

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Lam, Vincent
conference paper description
The aim of this paper is to discuss some aspects of the nature gravitational energy within the general theory of relativity. Some aspects of the difficulties to ascribe the usual features of localization and conservation to gravitational energy are reviewed and considered in the light of the dual of role of the dynamical gravitational field, which encodes both inertio-gravitational effects and the chronogeometrical structures of spacetime. These considerations will lead us to discuss the fact that the very notion of energy - gravitational or not - is actually well-defined in the theory only with respect to some background structure.