This series covers all areas of research at Perimeter Institute, as well as those outside of PI's scope.
Over Twenty-five years into the internet era, over twenty years into the WorldWideWeb era, fifteen years into the Google era, and a few years past the Facebook/Twitter era, we've yet to converge on a new long-term methodology for scholarly research communication. I will provide a sociological overview of our current metastable state, and then a technical discussion of the practical implications of literature and usage data considered as computable objects, using arXiv as exemplar.
It has become a platitute to say that black holes are fascinating objects—but they really are, in part because they challenge our understanding of the fundamental reversibility of physical processes.
Modern physics rests on two basic frameworks, quantum theory and general relativity. Quantum gravity aims to unify these two frameworks into one consistent theory. One can expect that such a formulation delivers in particular a novel understanding of space and time as quantum objects.
I will give an introduction to some basic concepts in quantum gravity research and present possible models of quantum space time.
There is an analogy between the propagation of fields in the vicinity of astrophysical black holes and the that of small excitations in fluids and superfluids. This analogy allows one to test, challenge and verify, in tabletop experiments, the elusive processes of black hole mass and angular momentum loss.
I will first present a brief overview on analogue black hole experiments, and then discuss in more detail some of my earlier and more recent experimental and theoretical results on the subject.
The discovery of the Higgs boson at the Large Hadron Collider marks the culmination of a decades-long hunt for the last ingredient of the Standard Model. At the same time, this discovery has started a new era in the search for more fundamental physics. In this talk, I will discuss what we have learned from the Higgs discovery about the mechanism of electroweak symmetry breaking and the implications for the existence of additional Higgs bosons. I will then highlight the future prospects of the Higgs boson in shedding light on New Physics and in particular on the nature of Dark Matter.
Galileons are higher-derivative effective field theories with curious properties which have attracted much recent interest among cosmologists. I will review their origins, their properties, their generalizations, and some recent developments.
Thanks to the spectacular observational advances since the 1990s, a `standard model' of the early universe has now emerged. However, since it is based on quantum field theory in curved space-times, it is not applicable in the Planck era. Using techniques from loop quantum gravity, the theory can be extended over the 12 orders of magnitude in density and curvature from the onset of inflation all the way back to the Planck regime, providing us with a possible completion of the standard model.
In holographic duality a gravitational spacetime emerges as an equivalent description of a lower-dimensional conformal field theory (CFT) living on the asymptotic boundary. Traditionally, the dimension not present in the CFT is interpreted in terms of its Renormalisation Group flow. In this talk I exploit the relation between boundary entanglement entropies and bulk minimal surfaces to define a quantitative framework for the holographic Renormalisation Group, in which quantum information theory plays a fundamental role.
After 50 years of dreaming about it, space-based microlensing observations are now underway. A 2014 100-hr Spitzer Pilot Program generated "microlens parallaxes" for dozens of lenses, opening the prospect of measuring the Galactic distribution of planets. This program will be expanded 8-fold in 2015. Analogous observations by Kepler will measure the mass function of free-floating planets.
The interplay of quantum mechanics and inter-particle interactions leads to enormously rich tapestry of quantum phases of matter. In this talk I will illustrate the unique synthesis offered by quantum entanglement on the landscape of quantum phases. I will especially discuss phases which do not show any kind of ordering even at the absolute zero temperature, two prime examples being spin liquids and quantum Hall phases.