Any of the various explanations of gravity as a quantum theory, including string theory and loop quantum gravity.

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The BICEP2 data are evidence of gravitational waves and of inflation. Are they also the first observation that requires quantum gravity?

It strikes me that the recent announcement of data from BICEP2 contains two really Big Deals: the first evidence of gravitational waves the first evidence of inflation. Is there also a third? ...
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What is background independence and how important is it?

What is background independence and how important is it? In order to be a theory of everything, will the final string-theory/m-theory have to be background independent? Does the current lack of ...
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4k views

What specifically does the phrase “continuum limit” mean?

I'm interested in the meaning of the phrase "continuum limit" specifically as it is often used in expressions relating to the ability of a quantum gravity theory to recover GR in the continuum limit. ...
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196 views

Quantum mechanical gravitational bound states

The quantum mechanics of Coloumb-force bound states of atomic nuclei and electrons lead to the extremely rich theory of molecules. In particular, I think the richness of the theory is related to the ...
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802 views

Quantization of Gravitational Field: Quantization conditions

I'm begining to study Quantization of field with the second quantization formalism. I've studied phononic field, electromagnetic field in the vacuum and a generic relativistical scalar field. I ...
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407 views

Is taking the “square root” of the densitized inverse triad irregular in loop quantum gravity?

In loop quantum gravity, the canonical (Ashtekar) variables are chosen to be the densitized inverse triad $\mathbf{E}$ and some rotation connection field $\mathbf{A}$. To get the ordinary triad from ...
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115 views

Speed of gravity within a mass

We all consider that gravity travels at the speed of light. Light travels at the speed of light except when it is in a medium ,say glass, where it travels slower. What happens when gravity passes ...
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2k views

How does the holographic principle imply nonlocality?

For example in the discussions here and here there are comments by Ron Maimon: Your complaint about locality would be more serious if holography didn't show the way--- the CFT in AdS/CFT ...
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538 views

Interpretation of the Einstein-Hilbert action

Everyone knows the famous Einstein-Hilbert action $S_{EH} = \int d^4x \sqrt{-g} R$. I'd like to know if, after we first explicit the Ricci scalar in terms of the metric, it could be possible to ...
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263 views

Scale set by cosmological constant

Following on Jim Graber's answer to: Can "big rip" rip apart an atomic nucleus? If the cosmological constant is large enough, even the ground state of a hydrogen atom can be affected. So ...
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483 views

How is the 'cluster decomposition principle' implemented in holographic theories?

Since holographic theories are non-local by definition, how is this principle implemented? Naively, it seems to me it is not, at least, in some sense. I would appreciate an explanation as simple ...
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262 views

Does the AdS/CFT correspondence for thermal states really imply time evolution for evaporating black holes is unitary?

You always hear theoreticians proudly proclaim the AdS/CFT correspondence implies time evolution for evaporating black holes is unitary. But if you examine the argument carefully, you find AdS black ...
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Does Hawking radiation break asymptotic flatness?

Basically what the question says -- there is reason to expect that, if allowed to continue long enough for the radiation to reach future null infinity, the fact that the radiation will fall off at ...
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592 views

Are there any versions of LQG that claim to not violate Lorentz symmetry?

LQG formulations have a minimum length/area. Since say, a Planck area can always be boosted, any minimum area in space can be shrunk. Do LQG proponents worry about local Lorentz invariance violation, ...
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135 views

What are the remaining obstacles to low-energy quantum gravity?

In a 2003 review Burgess outlined how the QFT perturbative methodology is being extended to gravity, and described some effective quantum gravity expansions that reproduce general relativity in the ...
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216 views

Significance for LQG of Sen's result on entropy of black holes?

Sen 2013 says, ...we apply Euclidean gravity to compute logarithmic corrections to the entropy of various non-extremal black holes in different dimensions [...] For Schwarzschild black holes in ...
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222 views

Why is the Planck length the shortest measurable length? [duplicate]

I quote from the Wikipedia article on Planck length: According to the generalized uncertainty principle, the Planck length is in principle, within a factor of order unity, the shortest ...
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473 views

Can the laws of quantum mechanics be derived from a more fundamental theory? [closed]

String theory takes quantum mechanics and tries to make it compatible with gravity. If it turns out to be a theory of everything then would it explain why our world is described by the laws of quantum ...
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180 views

Implications of Unruh-inertia to theories of gravity

If it turns out to be true that the galaxy rotation curves can be explained away by Unruh modes that become greater than the Hubble scale at accelerations around $10^{-10} m/s^2$ as proposed in here, ...
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506 views

What is the “foamy space” hypothesis that has been debunked recently?

In "Space-Time Is Smooth, Not Foamy", a Space.com article, it is stated: In his general theory of relativity, Einstein described space-time as fundamentally smooth, warping only under the strain ...
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Does string theory tells us anything concrete about black hole decay?

EDIT: I edited the question to reflect Moshe's objections. Please, look at it again. It's apparently a black hole time around here so I decided to ask a question of my own. After a few generic ...
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Evidence for quantum gravity from gravitational waves

The rumor spreads that physicists will make their big gravitational wave announcement this thursday. I am far from being an experimentalist, but I want to know if there is any chance that the ...
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249 views

Possibility of “graviballs”?

Looking at the relevant wikipedia page, one can read that the graviton should be massless. Is it 100 % certain that it is massless or is there room in any "nonstandard" models for a tiny non-zero mass ...
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299 views

How can one reconcile the temperature of a black hole with asymptotic flatness?

A stationary observer very close to the horizon of a black hole is immersed in a thermal bath of temperature that diverges as the horizon is approached. $$T^{-1} = 4\pi \sqrt{2M(r-2M)}$$ The ...
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What is the essence of BCFW recursion techniques?

I have recently briefly read about new methods as the Britto-Cachazo-Feng-Witten (BCFW) on-shell recursion method. Can anybody please tell me about the essence of it? What does it mean for the ...
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331 views

Why are geons unstable? Are there other problems with geons?

I read in various places geons are "generally considered unstable." Why? How solid is this reasoning? Is the reason geons are not studied much anymore because we can't make more progress without ...
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333 views

What experiment would disprove loop quantum gravity?

Loop Quantum Gravity (LQG) is a theory of quantum space-time that attempts to describe the interconnection between general relativity and quantum mechanics. It's main postulate is the granularity of ...
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144 views

Regarding Non-renormalizatibility of GR

I've been doing some reading trying to get to a better understanding of some renormalization issues with the Einstein-Hilbert action. But, something odd came into mind that I'm hoping some users may ...
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372 views

Einstein action as a functional of the tetrad (first order formulation of gravity)

Let the Einstein-Hilbert action be rewritten as a functional of the tetrad $e$ (units shall be set to $1$) such that $S_{EH}(e)=\int \frac{1}{2}\epsilon_{IJKL}~e^I\wedge e^J\wedge F^{KL}(\omega(e))$, ...
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811 views

How do I quantize a classical field theory

I have not been able to find any information about this on the Internet. I am a middle-schooler, 14, who self-studies physics, and I know up to and including ODEs, and some of the calculus of ...
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404 views

Is the quantization of gravity necessary for a quantum theory of gravity? Part II

(At the suggestion of the user markovchain, I have decided to take a very large edit/addition to the original question, and ask it as a separate question altogether.) Here it is: I have since ...
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249 views

Does wave-particle duality exist for gravitational waves?

For electromagnetic waves there exists a wave/particle duality: light sometimes behaves as a wave, and other times as a particle (photons). Does such a duality exist for gravitational waves? In other ...
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333 views

What happens when you apply the path integral to the Einstein-Hilbert action?

The Einstein Field Equations emerge when applying the principle of least action to the Einstein-Hilbert action, and from what I understand the path integral formulation generalizes the principle of ...
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Physical laws prior the big bang (quantum fluctuations)

A theory among scientists says that quantum fluctuations caused the big bang and created the universe. This seems plausible to me. What I can't grasp yet is how a quantum fluctuation can even start ...
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What do we learn from gravity in three spacetime dimensions?

The last decades there has been a lot of research going on in the the area of three dimensional gravity. The motivation, I understand, is threefold: Whereas gravity is not perturbatively ...
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146 views

Is there a black hole interior in black hole complementarity?

According to black hole complementarity, for an external observer, the interior of the black hole is replaced with a stretched horizon at a Planck distance above where the horizon ought to be. Is this ...
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181 views

Are timelike diffeomorphisms really redundancies in description in quantum gravity?

Are timelike diffeomorphisms really redundancies in description in quantum gravity? Certainly Yang-Mills gauge transformations can be considered redundancies in description. Ditto for p-form ...
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183 views

If a fundamental theory exibits e.g. a mirror symmetry, in what sense it the underlying geometry real?

Are the more recently discovered symmetries in string theory such that the theories based on mirroring geometries are absolutely the same from an observable point of view? I have mirror symmetry ...
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463 views

Do we need a quantum deformation of the diffeomorphism group in string theory?

Let me justify my question before I go on. In string theory, gravitons are strings extended over space. Longitudinal gravitons are pure gauge modes of the diffeomorphism group. However, in string ...
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175 views

Dirac bracket and second class constraints in first-order gravity formalism

In the first order formulation of general relativity, the frame field $e_{\mu}^a$ and $\mathrm{SO}(3,1)$ spin connection $\omega_{\mu c}^b$ are independent variables. In the Hamiltonian formulation of ...
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From the perspective of an observer inside a black hole's horizon, where does the energy for Hawking radiation come from?

Would energy be seen to "flow" to the outside of the black hole? Through what mechanism?
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282 views

What are Galileons good for?

Lately I've seen many papers (for example "The galileon as a local modification of gravity"; 292 total hits on the arXiv) on types of field theories known as Galileons, and I'm wondering what the ...
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252 views

Are there any proposed alternatives to quantum mechanics as there are alternatives to general relativity?

There are a lot of alternatives to general relativity and one of the motivations is attempting to formulate a working theory of quantum gravity. In some limit they reduce to general relativity. But ...
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Finite quantum gravity?

I'm working through an article that has some questionable assertions. The article is by Frank Tipler, "The structure of the world from pure numbers". (I'm going to ignore the fact that some of ...
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183 views

why nontrivially space-like connected event horizons do not respect unitarity?

I want to understand the assertion that the gluing between distant event horizons is forbidden by unitarity. What is exactly the argument that unitarity will necessarily forbid topological nontrivial ...
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193 views

Geometric entropy vs entanglement entropy (dependent on curvature coupling parameter)

I have a quick question. In hep-th/9506066, Larsen and Wilczek calculated the geometric entropy (which I believe is just another name for entanglement entropy) for a non-minimally coupled scalar field ...
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157 views

Can we have consistent histories inside a black hole?

A consistent history is a POVM set of observables corresponding to a time-ordered product of projection operators. For gauge theories, not any old operator will do, only gauge-invariant observables. ...
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652 views

Does perturbation theory break down for quantum gravity?

Perturbation theory presumes we have a valid family of models over some continuous (infinitely differentiable, in fact) range for some parameters, i.e. coupling constants. We have some special values ...
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Does general relativity fail in conditions with very large gravitational forces?

It is said in this wikipedia article (in the 7th paragraph) that where there exists huge masses and very large gravitational forces (like around binary pulsars), general relativistic effects can be ...
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Why are there 4 Dimensions and 4 Fundamental Forces?

Is it a coincidence that there are four fundamental forces and four spacetime dimensions ? Does a universe with three spacetime dimension contain four fundamental forces? Can magnetism be realized in ...