Is a tabletop search for Planck scale signals feasible?

Por • 28 ene, 2013 • Sección: Educacion

Jacob D. Bekenstein

Abstract: Quantum gravity theory is untested experimentally. Could it be tested with tabletop experiments? While the common feeling is pessimistic, a detailed inquiry shows it possible to sidestep the onerous requirement of localization of a probe on Planck length scale. I suggest a tabletop experiment which, given state of the art ultrahigh vacuum and cryogenic technology, could already be sensitive enough to detect Planck scale signals. The experiment combines a single photon’s degree of freedom with one of a macroscopic probe to test Wheeler’s conception of «quantum foam», the assertion that on length scales of the order Planck’s, spacetime is no longer a smooth manifold. The scheme makes few assumptions beyond energy and momentum conservations, and is not based on a specific quantum gravity scheme.

arXiv:1211.3816v2 [gr-qc]

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