Limits on locality from gravitational dressing

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In quantum gravity, observables must be diffeomorphism-invariant. Such observables are nonlocal, in contrast with the standard assumption of locality in flat spacetime quantum field theory. I will show how to construct 'gravitationally dressed' observables in linearized gravity that become local in the weak gravity limit, and whose corrections to exact locality are characterized by the Newtonian potential. One can attempt to make these observables more local by concentrating gravitational field lines into a smaller solid angle. In AdS_3 gravity I will show that nonperturbatively there are sharp limits to how much the gravitational dressing can be concentrated.

Based on arXiv:1507.07921 with Steve Giddings, and arXiv:1510.00672 with Don Marolf and Eric Mintun.