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Let be a smooth manifold with tangent bundle . Let be a local parametrization, defined on some open domain , and let be the partial derivatives; the vectors , form a basis of for every .
A semi-Riemannian metric on a is a linear bundle map , sometimes called metric tensor, which is nondegenerate, that is where . If is positive definite, for every nonzero vector field on , it is called a Riemannian metric. A (semi-) Riemannian manifold is a smooth manifold together with a (semi-)Riemannian metric .
- it has no torsion, ,
- the metric is parallel, .
The second equation involves the covariant derivative of the metric tensor which is defined in such a way that applications of tensors to vector fields satisfy the Leibniz product rule:
for all . Thus the rules (1) and (2) can be rephrased as
for all . If the semi-Riemannian metric is fixed, we often write
The Levi-Civita connection is uniquely determined by properties (1) and (2) which imply
for all (Koszul formula). If we specialize to the coordinate vector fields , the Lie bracket terms vanish:
Denoting the coefficents of , the so called Christoffel symbols by ,
we obtain the Levi-Civita formula
where denotes the inverse matrix of the metric coefficient matrix .
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