Publication Date



Technical Report: UTEP-CS-07-35

Published in International Journal of Theoretical Physics, 2008, Vol. 27, No. 4, pp. 1083-1091.


It is known that every causality-preserving transformation of Minkowski space-time is a composition of Lorentz transformations, shifts, rotations, and dilations. In principle, this result means that by only knowing the causality relation, we can determine the coordinate and metric structure on the space-time. However, strictly speaking, the theorem only says that this reconstruction is possible if we know the exact causality relation. In practice, measurements are never 100% accurate. It is therefore desirable to prove that if a transformation approximately preserves causality, then it is approximately equal to an above-described composition.

Such a result was indeed proven, but only for a very particular case of approximate preservation.

In this paper, we prove that simple compactness-related ideas can lead to a transformation of the exact causality-preserving result into an approximately-preserving one.