This book is a comprehensive survey of the current state of knowledge about the dynamics and gravitational properties of cosmic strings treated in the idealized classical approximation as line singularities described by the Nambu-Goto action. The author's purpose is to provide a standard reference to all work that has been published since the mid-1970s and to link this work together in a single conceptual framework and a single notational formalism. A working knowledge of basic general relativity is assumed. The book will be essential reading for researchers and postgraduate students in mathematics, theoretical physics, and astronomy interested in cosmic strings.
"Anderson provides a comprehensive summary and review of the mathematical theory of cosmic strings. The subject is not in a state of rapid change so the book is up to date and it is likely to remain so for some time. Although the book is technical and requires a strong mathematical background and an interest in differential geometry, it is well written and reads easily … I found the later sections particularly interesting, especially the discussion of the infinite straight string and the associated singularity structure … This is a valuable reference work and compendium of results."
-D.R. Matravers, Contemporary Physics, 2003, 44/5
Part I String dynamics in a fixed background: The elements of string dynamics. String dynamics in Minkowski Spacetime. A bestiary of known trajectories in Minkowski Spacetime. String dynamics in a Robertson-Walker metric. other background metrics. Part II The gravitational field of a cosmic spring: Infinite straight strings. Systems of straight strings and closed timelike curves. Traveling-wave solutions and the interaction of strings with gravitational waves. Circular cosmic strings. Part III Towards a self-consistent theory of string dynamics: The weak-field approximation. The gravitational field at small distances. Cosmic strings and black holes.