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Bootstrapping Time: Colliders, Shocks, Strings, and Black Holes

Objective

Two pillars of modern physics are Quantum Field Theory (QFT) and General Relativity (GR). Together they describe a vast corpus of phenomena ranging from the smallest scales accessible with modern accelerators to the largest distances observed with modern telescopes. Establishing these frameworks is a triumph of 20th-century physics. Our understanding of both is not satisfactory. On the QFT side, we lack tools to analyze the strong coupling regime. On the GR side, we do not understand how to make it quantum. The insight of holography is that these two problems are deeply connected, in other words, QFT and Quantum Gravity (QG) are different realizations of the same underlying mathematical structure and physical principles. Providing us with this fundamental insight, holography does not tell us what the underlying structure is. The challenge for 21st-century physics is to understand it. The aim of the present proposal is to establish a research team at CERN that: a) will {\it develop new nonperturbative Lorentzian bootstrap methods} as a part of a larger quest of revealing the unifying mathematical structure and physical principles that underlie both QFT and QG; b) use these methods for state-of-the-art {\it computations of real-time physical observables} which are not accessible using conventional methods. This will lead to new insights into the fundamental properties of QFT, QG, and holography which relates the two. The principal novelty of the project is in its focus on the nonperturbative real-time dynamics, as opposed to Euclidean observables which are typically studied using the current bootstrap or other methods. Bootstrap takes fundamental principles of physics, such as causality, locality, and unitarity, and pushes their consequences to the extreme. Combined with insights from holography, bootstrap methods offer an unprecedented set of tools for diving into uncharted territories of QFT and QG.

Call for proposal

ERC-2020-STG
See other projects for this call

Funding Scheme

ERC-STG - Starting Grant

Host institution

EUROPEAN ORGANIZATION FOR NUCLEAR RESEARCH
Address
Esplanade Des Particules 1 Parcelle 11482 De Meyrin Batiment Cadastral 1046
1211 Geneva 23
Switzerland
Activity type
Research Organisations
EU contribution
€ 1 306 250

Beneficiaries (2)

EUROPEAN ORGANIZATION FOR NUCLEAR RESEARCH
Switzerland
EU contribution
€ 1 306 250
Address
Esplanade Des Particules 1 Parcelle 11482 De Meyrin Batiment Cadastral 1046
1211 Geneva 23
Activity type
Research Organisations
ECOLE POLYTECHNIQUE FEDERALE DE LAUSANNE
Switzerland
EU contribution
€ 148 750
Address
Batiment Ce 3316 Station 1
1015 Lausanne
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments