The acceleration tensor is an antisymmetric tensor describing the four-acceleration of particles and consisting of six components. Tensor components are at the same time components of the two three-dimensional vectors – acceleration field strength and the solenoidal acceleration vector.
With the acceleration tensor the acceleration stress-energy tensor, the acceleration field equations and the four-force density in matter are defined. Acceleration field in matter is a component of general field.
For the vectors, related to the specific point particle, considered as a solid body, we can write:
where , is the velocity of the particle.
To transform the components of the acceleration tensor from one inertial system to another we must take into account the transformation rule for tensors. If the reference frame K' moves with an arbitrary constant velocity with respect to the fixed reference system K, and the axes of the coordinate systems parallel to each other, the acceleration field strength and the solenoidal acceleration vector are transformed as follows:
is the antisymmetric tensor of rank 2, it follows from this condition . Three of the six independent components of the acceleration tensor associated with the components of the acceleration field strength , and the other three – with the components of the solenoidal acceleration vector . Due to the antisymmetry such invariant as the contraction of the tensor with the metric tensor vanishes: .
Contraction of tensor with itself is an invariant, and the contraction of tensor product with Levi-Civita symbol as is the pseudoscalar invariant. These invariants in the special relativity can be expressed as follows:
Determinant of the tensor is also Lorentz invariant:
Through the acceleration tensor the equations of acceleration field are written:
where is the mass 4-current, is the mass density in comoving reference frame, is the 4-velocity, is a constant of acceleration field.
Instead of (2) it is possible use the expression:
Equation (2) is satisfied identically, which is proved by substituting into it the definition for the acceleration tensor according to (1). If in (2) we insert tensor components , this leads to two vector equations:
According to (5), the solenoidal acceleration vector has no sources as its divergence vanishes. From (4) follows that the time variation of the solenoidal acceleration vector leads to a curl of the acceleration field strength.
Equation (3) relates the acceleration field to its source in the form of mass 4-current. In Minkowski space of special relativity the form of the equation is simplified and becomes:
where is the density of moving mass,
is the density of mass current.
According to the first of these equations, the acceleration field strength is generated by the mass density, and according to the second equation the mass current or change in time of the acceleration field strength generate the circular field of the solenoidal acceleration vector.
The continuity equation for the mass 4-current is a gauge condition that is used to derive the field equation (3) from the principle of least action. Therefore, the contraction of the acceleration tensor and the Ricci tensor must be zero: . In Minkowski space the Ricci tensor equal to zero, the covariant derivative becomes the partial derivative, and the continuity equation becomes as follows:
The wave equation for the acceleration tensor is written as: 
Total Lagrangian for the matter in gravitational and electromagnetic fields includes the acceleration tensor and is contained in the action function: 
where is Lagrangian, is differential of coordinate time, is a certain coefficient, is the scalar curvature, is the cosmological constant, which is a function of the system, is the speed of light as a measure of the propagation speed of electromagnetic and gravitational interactions, is the gravitational four-potential, is the gravitational constant, is the gravitational tensor, is the electromagnetic 4-potential, is the electromagnetic 4-current, is the electric constant, is the electromagnetic tensor, is the 4-potential of acceleration field, and are the constants of acceleration field and pressure field, respectively, is the acceleration tensor, is the 4-potential of pressure field, is pressure field tensor, is the invariant 4-volume, is the square root of the determinant of metric tensor, taken with a negative sign, is the product of differentials of the spatial coordinates.
The variation of the action function by 4-coordinates leads to the equation of motion of the matter unit in gravitational and electromagnetic fields and pressure field:
where the first term on the right is the gravitational force density, expressed with the help of the gravitational field tensor, second term is the Lorentz electromagnetic force density for the charge density measured in the comoving reference frame, and the last term sets the pressure force density.
If we vary the action function by the acceleration 4-potential, we obtain the equation of acceleration field (3).
Studying Lorentz covariance of 4-force, Friedman and Scarr found not full covariance expressions for 4-force in the form 
This led them to conclude that the four-acceleration must be expressed with the help of some antisymmetric tensor :
Based on the analysis of different types of motion, they rated their required values of the components of the acceleration tensor, thereby giving this tensor indirect definition.
From comparison with (6) it follows that the tensor up to a sign and a constant factor coincides with the acceleration tensor in case when rectilinear motion of a solid body without rotation is considered. Then indeed the four-potential of the acceleration field coincides with the four-velocity, . As a result, the quantity on the right-hand side of (6) vanishes, since the following relations hold true: , . With this in mind, in (6) we can raise the index and cancel the mass density, which gives the following:
Mashhoon and Muench considered transformation of inertial reference systems, related to accelerated frame of reference, and came to the relation: 
Tensor has the same properties as the acceleration tensor
In the articles 
devoted to the modified Newtonian dynamics (MOND), in the tensor-vector-scalar gravity appear scalar function or , that defines a scalar field, and 4-vector or , and 4-tensor or
The analysis of these values in the corresponding Lagrangian demonstrates that scalar function or correspond to scalar potential of the acceleration field; 4-vector or correspond to 4-potential of the acceleration field; 4-tensor or correspond to acceleration tensor .
As it is known, the acceleration field is not intended to explain the accelerated motion, but for its accurate description. In this case, it can be assumed that the tensor-vector-scalar theories cannot pretend to explain the rotation curves of galaxies. At best, they can only serve to describe the motion, for example to describe the rotation of stars in galaxies and the rotation of galaxies in clusters of galaxies.