because Jackson is a little disingenuous about not needing to consider explicit Lorentz transforms. However,
the basic idea is very important, and you must master it: if you work out a tensorquantity in any frame and
express your result as a tensorfunction of welldefined tensors, this same expression must be correct in any
frame.
Jackson: The electric and magnetic fields of a charge in uniform motion are obtained from coulombs law in
the charges rest frame, and the fact that the fieldstrength F
o
is an antisymmetrictensor of rank 2,
; ; [I.1]
This can be done without considering the explicit Lorentz transform! The idea is the following: for a charge in
uniform motion, the only relevant variables are the charges 4velocity U
o
and the relative coordinate
p q
X x x
o o o
, where { , }
p q
x x
o o
are the 4vector coordinates of the observation point and the charge,
respectively. The only antisymmetric tensor that can be formed is X U X U
o   o
. Thus, the electromagnetic
field (tensor) F
o
must be this tensor multiplied by some scalar function of the possible scalar products X X
o
o
, X U
o
o
, or U U
o
o
, all of which are invariants.
a) consider the following geometry,
[I.2]
The coordinates of P and q at a common time in K can be written,
( ) ( ) , ; , ; 0
p q
x ct x ct t
o o
= =  = b v b v [I.3]
By considering the general form of F
o
in the restframe of the charge, show that,
2 2 3/2
( ( ) )
q X U X U
F
c c U X X X
o   o
o
o o
o o
[I.4]
Verify that [I.4] yields [I.1] in frame K.
Woodard: note that boosting to the rest frame of the charge and using 0  = v b
1
yields,
( ) ( )
1
, ; ,
p q
x ct t x ct
v
 
   o      o
( (
A = =
( (
+ + ( (
[I.6]
Considering
0 0   =  = v b b , we get,
( )
( )
3
1
,
get the fields
( )
1
:
at x ; they are
,
p
p
q
x ct t
q t
x ct t
' ( =
'  
( (
( =

( (

' '
' = (
\ .
b v
E b v
B 0
0 b v
[I.7]
Next: assemble them into the primed field strength tensor, and then express F
v
' as X U U X
v v
' ' ' ' times a
function of the invariants ' '  U X and ' '  X X ; note that ( , ) U c
' = 0 and
p q
X x x
' ' ' , even though the two
events are not simultaneous in the primed frame.
X
U
' (
=
(
'
[I.8]
Finally: show that the unprimed result agrees with.
Woodard: you are to carry out the same exercise, but now express your answer for the primed field strength
tensor in terms of the 4vector Y
' , which his deinfed as the separation between observation and charge events
which are simultaneous in the rest frame of the charge. The point is, of course, that you still get a completely
correct expression.
Woodard: you are to express the result in terms of the 4vector Z
' , which is defined as the separation
between observation and charge when the observation events occurs at the time needed for light to propagate
from the charge event. The point is: you get a correct expression for the fieldstrength tensor. It doesnt matter
how you express it in terms of tensors. Any valid expression will be right. You can exploit this method by
choosing whatever tensors are most convenient for whatever problem you are solving.