This series covers all areas of research at Perimeter Institute, as well as those outside of PI's scope.
Familiar textbook quantum mechanics assumes a fixed background spacetime to define states on spacelike surfaces and their unitary evolution between them. Quantum theory has been generalized as our conceptions of space and time have evolved. But quantum mechanics needs to be generalized further for quantum gravity where spacetime geometry is fluctuating and without definite value. This talk will review a fully four-dimensional, sum-over-histories, generalized quantum mechanics of cosmological spacetime geometry.
Globular proteins, which act as enzymes, are a key component of the network of life. Over many decades, much experimental data has been accumulated yet theoretical progress has been somewhat limited. We argue that the key results accumulated over the years inexorably lead to a unified framework for understanding proteins. Our framework yields predictions on the existence of a fixed menu of folds determined by geometry, the role of the amino acid sequence in selecting the native state structure from this menu and the propensity for amyloid formation.
Neutrinos are the big unknown in Particle Physics. Since their very beginning they behaved strangely. However, in the last decade experiments were able to solve some of their secrets. The talk will review the current experimental status of neutrino experiments and give an outlook on future activities.
The Laser Astrometric Test of Relativity (LATOR) is a Michelson-Morley-type experiment designed to improve current tests of the Einsteins theory of general relativity by more than four orders of magnitude. The LATOR mission uses laser interferometry between two laser sources placed on separate small spacecraft, whose lines of sight pass close by the Sun, to measure accurately the deflection of light in the solar gravity field.
In this expository talk, I describe how "chaotic behavior" not only was discovered in the study of the Newtonian N-body problem, but also is responsible for several strange appearing motions. Then, a mathematical outline of the general evolution of the universe, under Newton's laws, is provided. No prior background in dynamics or the mathematics of the N-body problem is needed to follow this lecture
Strongly correlated many-body systems are often formulated as gauge theories where gauge field plays a role of Lagrangian multiplier and fundamental matter field represents a fractional degree of freedom which carries only a fractional quantum number of microscopic particle. Although the fractional particles are prone to be confined at high energy owing to an infinite bare gauge coupling, they can emerge as deconfined degrees of freedom at low/intermediate energy scales as the gauge coupling is renormalized to a finite value by fluctuating matter fields.
Kilometer-scale neutrino detectors such as IceCube are discovery instruments covering nuclear and particle physics, cosmology and astronomy. Examples of their multidisciplinary missions include the search for the particle nature of dark matter and for additional small dimensions of space. In the end, their conceptual design is very much anchored to the observational fact that Nature produces protons and photons with energies in excess of 1020 and1013 electronvolts, respectively. The cosmic ray connection sets the scale of cosmic neutrino fluxes.