Correlated wordline theory of quantum gravity: low-energy consequences & table-top tests

16 10/2014

Thursday, 16 Oct. 2014, 14:00 - 15:00

Presenter: Philip C.E. Stamp; Pacific Institute of Theoretical Physics, Univ. of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada
Host: M. Aspelmeyer
Where: Schrödingerroom, 4th floor, Boltzmanngasse 5, 1090 Wien

It is often incorrectly assumed that the clash between Quantum Mechanics (QM) and General Relativity (GR) only happens as one approaches the Planck energy. I will show through simple thought experiments that there is a severe conflict at laboratory energy scales. I will then argue that the only reasonable way to fix this is in a “correlated worldline” theory wherein gravity creates correlations between different Feynman paths for the SAME PARTICLE (or field). The basic structure of this theory is explained, and the modifications it implies for our ideas about spacetime.

For laboratory tests one only requires the low-energy version of this theory, and controlled calculations can be done with no adjustable parameters. I describe how such calculations can be done, and then what sort of effects they predict for ‘2-path’ experiments and for Bell inequality experiments. The deviations from QM will be hard to see, since gravity is a weak force – but they are by no means beyond current experimental techniques.