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

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Is spacetime an illusion?

In consistent histories, for gauge theories, can the projection operators used in the chains be not gauge invariant? In quantum gravity, for a projection operator to be gauge invariant means it has ...
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772 views

What is the motivation for assuming “Page” scrambling for Hawking radiation?

What is the motivation for assuming "Page" scrambling for Hawking radiation? Obviously, at the semiclassical level, we want the outgoing Hawking radiation to look thermal and mixed. However, surely ...
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227 views

Is the only diffeomorphism invariant anthropic principle the final anthropic principle?

Quantum gravity is a gauge theory with the gauge symmetry spacetime diffeomorphisms. Presumably the quantum state of our universe is invariant under spacetime diffeomorphisms, including timelike ...
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51 views

What is the status of gauged gravity [duplicate]

The Standard Model of elementary particles is a gauge theory with gauge group $SU(3)\times SU(2)\times U(1)$, which is really a successful theory. We might be able to quantize gravity similarly. ...
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289 views

Squashed 3-sphere?

What is a squashed 3-sphere? In context of quantum gravity. I stumbled upon a term 'squashed 7 sphere' but that's concerning supersymmetry. Is it just normal 3-sphere metric, that is just 'squashed' ...
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249 views

Superspace as the Hilbert Space for Quantum Gravity

Let $\mathcal{A}$ be the Ashtekar connection. Since $^{(3)}g_{AB}=i\frac{\delta}{\delta\mathcal{A}^{AB}}$ (see R. Penrose, 2004: Road to Reality. Vintage Books, 1136 pp.), the Ashtekar connection, in ...
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110 views

Timelike Loop Spaces as Projective Null Twistor Spaces

Let $\mathcal{M}$ be a spacetime, and let $\Omega\mathcal{M}$ denote the loop space of the spacetime. My idea is that the set of all closed timelike curves of $\mathcal{M}$ forms the projective null ...
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102 views

Spaans, “On Quantum Contributions to Black Hole Growth”

This paper was posted to arxiv a couple of weeks ago: http://arxiv.org/abs/1309.1067 From the abstract: The effects of Wheeler's quantum foam on black hole growth are explored from an ...
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3k views

Is time quantized? Is there a fundamental time unit that cannot be divided? [duplicate]

Is the present just a sharp line between the past and the future with no time at all, or is the present a short frozen unit of time? Could time be quantized into a fundamental units? Like Planck ...
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3answers
846 views

Is it possible that QM is just GR?

The more I learn about General Relativity, the more it seems like it isn't fully understood. It seems that before it's full consequences were exhaustively understood, not 10 years after its discovery, ...
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3answers
599 views

Does the Opera result hint to a discrete spacetime?

Could the Opera result be interpreted as some kind of hint to a discrete spacetime that is only seen for high enough energy neutrinos? I think I've read (some time ago) something like this in a ...
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359 views

Can an object be infinitely small?

I read somewhere that the earth has to be smaller than 1 cm to become a black hole, according to Schwarzschild. Since big bang came from a singularity, I am wondering, is there any minimum volume for ...
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1k views

What is the smallest existing thing in theory and law?

What is the smallest existing thing in theory and law?
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1k views

Are all points in the universe connected?

Is it true that every point in the universe is connected or could be so theoretically? If so how is this mediated? Is it through the quantum nature of the fabric of space or is it through the ...
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2k views

Higgs-Boson/Graviton [duplicate]

The Higgs boson gives particles mass. And the graviton is the theoretical force-carrier of gravity. Gravity depends on mass. So if the Higgs Boson gives things mass, it therefore gives them gravity. ...
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4answers
1k views

Why is gravity weak at the quantum level?

Why is gravity stronger than other forces at the macroscopic level, yet weaker than other forces at the quantum level? Is there an explanation?
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967 views

What is known on violations of unitarity or locality?

Recently the amplituhedron become a hot topic. I realized that two of the central pillars that QFT is based on, unitarity and locality, are no longer playing an important part (due to gravitational ...
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368 views

Set theory, category theory, realism and the recent “reality of the wavefunction” papers

I will add a better phrased question here. Do we need to consider quantum foundations to form a quantum theory of gravity? The kind of foundational question I am thinking of is expressed in the ...
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2answers
680 views

What are the implications for quantum gravity if the LHC sees no higgs?

Following the news in serious "non-hype" physics blogs I`ve learnd that as things are now one needs a lot of patience and more data to learn what happens in the higgs sector. There are already a ...
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569 views

Introductions to discrete space-time

It's comparatively easy (cum grano salis) to grasp the following concepts: Euclidean space-time (continous space and continuous time) classical mechanics (discretely distributed matter in continous ...
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372 views

Possibly naive question about quantized space-time

I beg your pardon in advance if this question is naive. In Quantum Mechanics, discrete values of measurements occur only in relation to bound states. This is because of the general solution for the ...
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371 views

The cap on massive particles's speed is below the speed of light due to Planck length?

This answer http://worldbuilding.stackexchange.com/a/8525/1991 claims that no particle can accelerate further after its de Broglie wavelength becomes Planck length. Given that speed at this point is ...
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145 views

What predictions can a quantum gravity theory make?

Some of the major challenges that heralded the need for quantum mechanics we're explaining the photo-electric effect, the double-slit experiment, and electrons behavior in semi conductors. What are ...
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932 views

How do gravitons and curved space time work together? [duplicate]

I've heard two different descriptions of gravity, and I'm wondering how they work together. The first is Gravitons: "The three other known forces of nature are mediated by elementary particles: ...
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710 views

Dirac Equation in General Relativity

Dirac equation for the massless fermions in curved spase time is $γ^ae^μ_aD_μΨ=0$, where $e^μ_a$ are the tetrads. I have to show that Dirac spinors obey the following equation: ...
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177 views

Is BRST ghost number conserved in quantum gravity?

Quantum gravity needs Faddeev-Popov ghosts. Feynman showed that. Take a black hole. Hawking pair production of ghost-antighost pair. One ghost falls into the hole and hits the singularity. The ghost ...
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244 views

Could strings be geons?

Is it possible that string theory strings are geons? This may be an overly speculative or naive question, but is there an obvious reason why not? Both strings and geons seem to have roughly the same ...
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328 views

Gravitational and gauge-gravitational anomalies in N=1 D=4 supergravity coupled to a SUSY gauge theory with chiral matter

When people talk about the first superstring revolution they often mention the miraculous cancellation of anomalies via the Green Schwarz mechanism. My question is whether such a string-theoretic ...
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120 views

How can Planck units be consistent with conflicting dimensions of mass?

I suspect I'm missing something obvious, but I'm coming up blank. I've gotten pretty comfortable with so-called natural units over the years: in doing quantum mechanics/QFT, it's common to set $c = ...
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292 views

Was Planck's constant $h$ the same when the Big Bang happened as it is today?

Was Planck's constant $h$ the same when the Big Bang happened as it is today? Planck's constant : $$h= 6.626068 × 10^{-34}\, m^2 kg / s,$$ $$E=n.h.\nu,$$ $$\epsilon=h.\nu$$
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322 views

Gravity and Planck scale

What is the connection between Planck's constant and gravity? Why is the Planck scale the natural scale for quantum gravity? I would have though the scale would be related to G, not h.
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323 views

Why must the excitation of closed strings in String Theory be spin-2?

In String Theory it is predicted that as a result of the closed strings we have spin-2 gravitons. 1) How do we know there must be an excitation of spin-2 particles? 2) Why does a spin-2 particle ...
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744 views

Is string theory a quantum theory of gravity?

I have read that string theory predicts (or requires ?) the existence of gravitons. So, would that make it a quantum theory of gravity ? If so, I have also read that quantum gravity would allow us to ...
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201 views

Phys.org Spectral geometry to unite relativity and quantum mechanics, restate in laymens terms?

Lingua Franca links relativity and quantum theories with spectral geometry Could someone give me a short synopsis of this article in laymens terms? What implications does this have in the physics ...
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325 views

Question on inflation as a phase transition

I have just finished watching the following video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=beQ9fZ0jVdE where Laughlin, Gross and some students discuss e.g. about inflation. The following question is risen: Is ...
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131 views

Why are some extra dimension theories known as strongly coupled and others as weakly coupled?

I was looking at pdf file of the presentation of a conference talk. The speaker discusses two types of "mechanisms" for stabilizing the weak scale and calls them "weakly coupled" and "strongly ...
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175 views

Hilbert of quantum gravity: bulk $\otimes$ horizon

I was reading a paper dealing with the Hilbert of quantum gravity (or more precisely what should it look like considering what we know from QM and GR) ref: http://arxiv.org/abs/1205.2675 and the ...
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187 views

Canonical quantum gravity

I am looking for an introduction (textbook or paper, or if someone wouldn't mind writing a memo on it) to canonical quantum gravity, specifically the concept of minisuperspaces. I have been reading ...
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435 views

Why are there Gravitons among the modes of oscillation in String Theory?

Why are gravitons present among the modes of oscillation of the 'strings' in String Theory?
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441 views

Can PEPS explain the holographic principle in quantum gravity?

Condensed matter physicists have shown using quantum information that in many condensed matter systems, entanglement entropy only scales as the area of the boundary, and not the volume. This is the ...
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91 views

What are the structures that exist at roughly the scale of the Planck length? [closed]

What are the mathematical/geometric structures that exist at the level of the Planck length?
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135 views

Decoherence without time?

Decoherence is a phenomenon that provides a part of the explanation of why quantum systems and classical systems behave differently. What I understood from decoherence so far is that it requires ...
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146 views

Is there an absolute minimum scale to the universe? If so, why?

Based on my rather circumscribed understanding of modern physics, one of the key insights of quantum mechanics over previous scientific theories is the prediction that there exists an absolute limit ...
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1answer
302 views

what does holographic principle from string theory say about the possibilities of wormhole travel?

Is travel through stable macroscopic wormholes between remote points of spacetime going to be possible in a definitive theory of gravity, be it string theory or something beyond it? Physicists level ...
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189 views

Please justify invoking logical positivism to causal patches and black hole interiors in quantum gravity!

Logical positivism is often invoked to explain why external observers can't talk about black hole interiors, or why we can't talk about what happens outside our causal patch in inflationary models. ...
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70 views

How are gravitons supposed to work?

If gravitons are particles, how is it that they can hold us to the ground, or create gravity between two stars millions of miles away from each other?
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82 views

Why is the value of the action integral in general relativity the same on all regions that are homologous?

In their famous paper Action integrals and partition functions in quantum gravity, Gibbons and Hawking argue that in order to avoid the singularity of a Schwarzschild black hole you can complexify ...
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205 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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208 views

Divergence of One and Two Graviton Exchanges

At the bottom of pg. 3, Kiritsis states the following To appreciate the difficulties with the quantization of Einstein gravity, we look at a single-graviton exchange between two particles (Fig. ...
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Why doesn't the firewall argument also apply to far away ingoing modes?

Gidom Mera's answer at http://physics.stackexchange.com/a/45511 is illuminating, but on closer analysis, it brings up further puzzles. Backscattering works in both directions. Let's see what we get ...