This volume presents a snapshot of the state-of-the-art in loop quantum gravity from the perspective of younger leading researchers. It takes the reader from the basics to recent advances, thereby bridging an important gap. The aim is two-fold — to provide a contemporary introduction to the entire field for students and post-docs, and to present an overview of the current status for more senior researchers. The contributions include the latest developments that are not discussed in existing books, particularly recent advances in quantum dynamics both in the Hamiltonian and sum over histories approaches; and applications to cosmology of the early universe and to the quantum aspects of black holes.
Loop quantum gravity is one of the modern contenders for a unified description of quantum mechanics and gravity. Up to now no book has covered the material at the level of a college student or of other readers with some knowledge of college level physics. This book fills that gap.
"Over the last decade, several important advances have occurred, that include the continuum and classical limit of the non-perturbative theory on the conceptual side, and concrete ideas on confronting quantum gravity with observations in cosmology. This volume takes the reader from basics to recent advances, thereby bridging an important gap. It presents a snapshot of the state-of-the-art in loop quantum gravity from the perspective of young leading researchers. The goal is two-fold: to provide a contemporary introduction to the entire field for students and post-docs and, an overview of the current status for more senior researchers. These overviews present the latest developments that are not discussed in existing books, particularly the applications to the cosmology of the early universe and quantum aspects of black holes"--
'In this remarkably well-written text, the authors introduce readers gently to the conceptual bricks of LQG without using any mathematics (quite an achievement). The debate started with the discovery that the space-time geometry of general relativity can be written in terms of the electromagnetic field. This led to intersecting graphs called loops. Now known as spin networks, they are the foundations of LQG. This slender volume discusses applications of LQG to black holes and cosmology and introduces the notion of spin foam, acknowledging that as yet the theory, though elegant, has no experimental confirmation … This book offers a fascinating introduction to an esoteric realm otherwise accessible to only a fortunate few.Summing Up: Highly recommended. Upper-division undergraduates. Graduate students and faculty researchers.'CHOICEChoice Outstanding Academic Title for 2020Loop quantum gravity is one of the main contenders to unify Einstein's general theory of relativity and quantum mechanics, therefore providing a quantum theory of gravity. If these words do not mean much to you, do not worry, we will define them in simple terms.This book describes loops quantum gravity and its applications to cosmology, black holes and spin foams without using formulas. It is concise and has a light style that makes for easy reading yet covering many of the cutting-edge developments in the field. It also addresses some of the controversies that surround these topics as they are incomplete science.
Today we are blessed with two extraordinarily successful theories of physics. The first is Albert Einstein's general theory of relativity, which describes the large-scale behaviour of matter in a curved spacetime. This theory is the basis for the standard model of big bang cosmology. The discovery of gravitational waves at the LIGO observatory in the US (and then Virgo, in Italy) is only the most recent of this theory's many triumphs. The second is quantum mechanics. This theory describes the properties and behaviour of matter and radiation at their smallest scales. It is the basis for the standard model of particle physics, which builds up all the visible constituents of the universe out of collections of quarks, electrons and force-carrying particles such as photons. The discovery of the Higgs boson at CERN in Geneva is only the most recent of this theory's many triumphs. But, while they are both highly successful, these two structures leave a lot of important questions unanswered. They are also based on two different interpretations of space and time, and are therefore fundamentally incompatible. We have two descriptions but, as far as we know, we've only ever had one universe. What we need is a quantum theory of gravity. Approaches to formulating such a theory have primarily followed two paths. One leads to String Theory, which has for long been fashionable, and about which much has been written. But String Theory has become mired in problems. In this book, Jim Baggott describes "the road less travelled": an approach which takes relativity as its starting point, and leads to a structure called Loop Quantum Gravity. Baggott tells the story through the careers and pioneering work of two of the theory's most prominent contributors, Lee Smolin and Carlo Rovelli. Combining clear discussions of both quantum theory and general relativity, this book offers one of the first efforts to explain the new quantum theory of space and time.
Following the fundamental insights from quantum mechanics and general relativity, geometry itself should have a quantum description; the search for a complete understanding of this description is what drives the field of quantum gravity. Group field theory is an ambitious framework in which theories of quantum geometry are formulated, incorporating successful ideas from the fields of matrix models, ten-sor models, spin foam models and loop quantum gravity, as well as from the broader areas of quantum field theory and mathematical physics. This special issue collects recent work in group field theory and these related approaches, as well as other neighbouring fields (e.g., cosmology, quantum information and quantum foundations, statistical physics) to the extent that these are directly relevant to quantum gravity research.
During the past two decades the gravitational asymptotic safety scenario has undergone a major transition from an exotic possibility to a serious contender for a realistic theory of quantum gravity. It aims at a mathematically consistent quantum description of the gravitational interaction and the geometry of spacetime within the realm of quantum field theory, which keeps its predictive power at the highest energies. This volume provides a self-contained pedagogical introduction to asymptotic safety, and introduces the functional renormalization group techniques used in its investigation, along with the requisite computational techniques. The foundational chapters are followed by an accessible summary of the results obtained so far. It is the first detailed exposition of asymptotic safety, providing a unique introduction to quantum gravity and it assumes no previous familiarity with the renormalization group. It serves as an important resource for both practising researchers and graduate students entering this maturing field.
Quantum gravity seeks a unified theory in which quantum matter is dynamically related to generally relativistic spacetime. Although a continuing work in progress, research programmes in the field such as string theory, loop quantum gravity, and causal set theory make it clear that a successful theory of quantum gravity will raise important challenges to our conceptions of space, time, and matter-perhaps abolishing them altogether as fundamental entities. But just as important, there is good reason to think that some of the problems in finding a theory of quantum gravity are themselves conceptual, in need of philosophical analysis. Philosophy Beyond Spacetime: Implications from Quantum Gravity assembles original papers from philosophers (and one physicist), establishing a definitive statement of the current state of play, on which future research into this area can build. Aiming to expand knowledge and understanding of the philosophy of quantum gravity, it emphasizes how debates in metaphysics—regarding emergence, composition, or grounding for example—shed light on the conceptual questions of quantum gravity. And conversely, how quantum theories of space and time call into question philosophical views grounded in classical spacetime. Furthermore, the philosophy of quantum gravity raises methodological questions, for instance concerning the relation between physics and metaphysics. The essays have been chosen to demonstrate to a wide range of philosophers the significance of the subject, as well as making novel contributions to it.
This book presents a collection of invited research and review contributions on recent advances in (mainly) theoretical condensed matter physics, theoretical chemistry, and theoretical physics. The volume celebrates the 90th birthday of N.H. March (Emeritus Professor, Oxford University, UK), a prominent figure in all of these fields. Given the broad range of interests in the research activity of Professor March, who collaborated with a number of eminent scientists in physics and chemistry, the volume embraces quite diverse topics in physics and chemistry, at various dimensions and energy scales. One thread connecting all these topics is correlation in aggregated states of matter, ranging from nuclear physics to molecules, clusters, disordered condensed phases such as the liquid state, and solid state physics, and the various phase transitions, both structural and electronic, occurring therein. A final chapter leaps to an even larger scale of matter aggregation, namely the universe and gravitation. A further no less important common thread is methodological, with the application of theoretical physics and chemistry, particularly density functional theory and statistical field theory, to both nuclear and condensed matter.
Since the creation of GR and subsequent works in cosmology, the question of the curvature of space in the Universe is considered one of the most important and debated to this day. This is evident, because the curvature of space depends whether the Universe expands, contracts or is static. These discussions allowed the author to propose a paradoxical idea: simultaneous existence in the Universe of three interconnected space-times (positive, negative and zero curvature) and on this basis, to develop a theory in which each space-time plays its own role and develops in a strict accordance with its sign of curvature. The three space-time model of the structure of the Universe, proposed by the author, allows to solve many fundamental problems of modern cosmology and theoretical physics and creates the basis for building a unified physical theory (including one that unites GR and quantum physics).