Utilizing more dimensions can help simplify complex problems, not just in science fiction but also in physics. Although Einstein’s theory of general relativity explains how gravity works in most cases, it fails to account for extreme conditions such as those found in black holes and cosmic primordial soups. Superstring theory could use another dimension to bridge the gap between general relativity and quantum mechanics, but evidence to support this proposal is lacking. Therefore, researchers led by Kyoto University have turned to ‘de Sitter space,’ a theoretical model that describes space in a way that aligns with Einstein’s general theory of relativity, to invoke a higher dimension and explain gravity in the expanding early universe. In this article, we will delve deeper into their research and the potential implications of their findings.
Theoretical Models of de Sitter Space
Dutch astronomer Willem de Sitter’s theoretical models describe space in a way that matches Einstein’s general theory of relativity, in that the positive cosmological constant explains the expansion of the universe. Hikida’s team reshaped existing methods for handling gravity in anti-de Sitter space to work in expanding de Sitter space and better account for what is already known about the universe. Their method computes correlation functions among fluctuations on an expanding universe, making use of holography. While initially dealing with quantum gravity, the team realized that their method could be applied more broadly. Hikida hopes to extend their analysis to investigate cosmological entropy and quantum gravity effects.
The team’s calculations only considered a three-dimensional universe as a test case, but the analysis can easily be extended to a four-dimensional universe, allowing for information extraction from the real world. The approach may help validate superstring theory and enable practical calculations on the subtle changes that occurred during the early universe’s expansion. The team’s findings could ultimately aid in unraveling the mystery of how gravity works in extreme conditions such as those found in black holes and cosmic primordial soups.
By utilizing a higher dimension to explain gravity in the expanding early universe, researchers led by Kyoto University have opened up new avenues for further exploration. The approach may help bridge the gap between general relativity and quantum mechanics and provide practical calculations on the early universe’s subtle changes. The team’s findings may ultimately aid in explaining how gravity works in extreme conditions, such as those found in black holes and cosmic primordial soups.
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