Conformal motions in Bianchi I spacetime.
In this thesis we study the physical properties of the manifold in general relativity that admits a conformal motion. The results obtained are general as the metric tensor field is not specified. We obtain the Lie derivative along a conformal Killing vector of the kinematical and dynamical quantities for the general energy-momentum tensor of neutral matter. Equations obtained previously are regained as special cases from our results. We also find the Lie derivative of the energy-momentum tensor for the electromagnetic field. In particular we comprehensively study conformal symmetries in the Bianchi I spacetime. The conformal Killing vector equation is integrated to obtain the general conformal Killing vector and the conformal factor subject to integrability conditions. These conditions place restrictions on the metric functions. A particular solution is exhibited which demonstrates that these conditions have a nonempty solution set. The solution obtained is a generalisation of the results of Moodley (1991) who considered locally rotationally symmetric spacetimes. The Killing vectors are regained as special cases of the conformal solution. There do not exist any proper special conformal Killing vectors in the Bianchi I spacetime. The homothetic vector is found for a nonvanishing constant conformal factor. We establish that the vacuum Kasner solution is the only Bianchi I spacetime that admits a homothetic vector. Furthermore we isolate a class of vectors from the solution which causes the Bianchi I model to degenerate into a spacetime of higher symmetry.