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General relativity has given us the GPS, and QFT has provided a big amount of useful technology, from medical treatments to advances in condensed matter. Can QFT in curved space lead to similar advances in technology/engineering/condensed matter? Is there any pratical device or technology at least inspired in QFT in curved space?

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  • $\begingroup$ I highly doubt any medical treatment depends on QFT. Also, that GR is needed for GPS is a myth. $\endgroup$ – user10851 Oct 26 '15 at 2:45
  • $\begingroup$ nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMra050276 $\endgroup$ – dwfa Oct 26 '15 at 11:59
  • $\begingroup$ PET scans were invented in the 50s, before almost all of QFT. And positrons themselves were discovered in the late 20s. One doesn't need QFT to use radioisotope tracers; one hardly even needs quantum mechanics. $\endgroup$ – user10851 Oct 26 '15 at 13:55
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It seems rather implausible that results from quantum field theory in curved spacetimes will lead to any technological innovations in the foreseeable future. This is mainly due to the fact that the length scales at which QFT in curved spacetimes starts to significantly differ from ''regular old'' QFT is much, much larger than our Earth.

Hence, it seems unreasonable to try to build any devices which relies on predictions that can only be made using QFT in curved spacetimes. That being said, never say never...

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  • $\begingroup$ Would it be possible to relate quantum field theory in curved space-time with quantum fields living on a sphere, for instance? $\endgroup$ – dwfa Oct 25 '15 at 23:00

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