Thursday, April 11th, 1:00 p.m.
Dolan Science Center room E133


Prof. John Linder
College of Wooster, Department of Physics


I describe research done with undergraduates at Wooster that elucidates our best theories of gravity. By running the Einstein field equations “backwards” and by exploiting computer algebra, we have designed artificial gravity fields for space ships, like those in Star Trek. We have also designed “closets” that are larger on the inside then on the outside and “refrigerators” that slow time (to keep food fresh). We have combined Einstein’s general relativity with Feynman’s sum-over-histories approach to quantum mechanics to explore a recent approach to quantum gravity called Causal Dynamical Triangulations. CDT recovers classical 3+1 dimensional spacetime at large scales but predicts a reduction to 1+1 dimensions at small scales.