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QFT with respect to general relativity

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tom.stoer
#37
Dec30-11, 04:19 PM
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Have a lokk at the ADM formulation of GR

http://arxiv.org/abs/gr-qc/0405109
The Dynamics of General Relativity
R. Arnowitt (Syracuse Univ.), S. Deser (Brandeis Univ.), C. W. Misner (Princeton Univ.)
(Submitted on 19 May 2004)
Abstract: This article--summarizing the authors' then novel formulation of General Relativity--appeared as Chapter 7 of an often cited compendium edited by L. Witten in 1962, which is now long out of print. Intentionally unretouched, this posting is intended to provide contemporary accessibility to the flavor of the original ideas. Some typographical corrections have been made: footnote and page numbering have changed--but not section nor equation numbering etc.

The 'gauge symmetry' is related to the diffeomorphism invariance
Finbar
#38
Dec30-11, 08:11 PM
P: 343
Quote Quote by suprised View Post
To make things easier, the electrons have an offset, or impact parameter, which is large, say 1km. Ordinarily one wouldnt expect that something would be peculiar or problematic.

But I didnt tell you that the kinetic energy of the electrons equals to the mass of a large star. A star with such a mass would form a black hole. So what's going to happen is that when the electrons are still, say 2km apart, a large black hole forms.
Suprised,

How can you be certain a black hole forms for the two electrons? This is not a kinematical regime that we have any experimental knowledge of and there is not an established theory at transplanckian energies. You cannot simply apply general relativity to two electrons with these energies.

It is a fact that one can only state when a black hole is formed with knowledge of the complete dynamical history of the spacetime. Yes it is true that initially when the two electrons are 2km apart that they should begin to collapse. But since they are transplanckian as they get closer to each other the quantum gravity effects will become important and it is possible that the collapse will cease to continue. So although an apparent horizon will form it is possible that once the electrons reach Planckian distances their coupling to the gravitational field will be vastly altered and a classical spacetime is unlikely to be a valid assumption.


To make rash statements about the formation of black holes one must at least take three quantities into account:

1) The total energy

2) The impact parameter

3) The number of degrees of freedom

The important thing in your example is the number of degrees of freedom is very small, just those of two electrons. Roughly speaking GR is only valid when the number of degrees of freedom is very large. So the normal hoop conjecture rational is good when we assume that there is a large number of degrees of freedom and so we only concern ourselves with 1) and 2). For a star this is fine but in your example it is clearly not.
tom.stoer
#39
Dec31-11, 01:43 AM
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Quote Quote by Finbar View Post
How can you be certain a black hole forms for the two electrons? This is not a kinematical regime that we have any experimental knowledge of and there is not an established theory at transplanckian energies. You cannot simply apply general relativity to two electrons with these energies.
I think this is what he wants to show: the usual reasoning of GR and even perturbative QG do no longer apply b/c what you mean by
Quote Quote by Finbar View Post
coupling to the gravitational field will be vastly altered
does not emerge from this ansatz.

What does the asymptotic safety program say about transplanckian scattering?
suprised
#40
Dec31-11, 02:24 AM
P: 407
Quote Quote by Finbar View Post
How can you be certain a black hole forms for the two electrons? This is not a kinematical regime that we have any experimental knowledge of and there is not an established theory at transplanckian energies. You cannot simply apply general relativity to two electrons with these energies.
Actually one cannot be certain and I should perhaps have said: “So, _according to standard expectations_, what's going to happen is that when the electrons are still, say 2km apart, a large black hole forms.”

There was a paper by t' Hooft in the 80's supporting this idea.
Indeed, this is also the viewpoint of the more recent “classicalization” or “UV-self-completeness” approach to gravity by Dvali & Co, see eg:

arXiv:1006.0984v1:

Physics of Trans-Planckian Gravity
Authors: Gia Dvali, Sarah Folkerts, Cristiano Germani
(Submitted on 4 Jun 2010)

But this is by no means undisputed, and AFAIK no one really knows what is going to happen under these circumstances. So the question about the S-Matrix is a very important one.


Quote Quote by Finbar View Post
… Yes it is true that initially when the two electrons are 2km apart that they should begin to collapse. But since they are transplanckian as they get closer to each other the quantum gravity effects will become important and it is possible that the collapse will cease to continue. So although an apparent horizon will form it is possible that once the electrons reach Planckian distances ….
With the large impact parameter they will never reach Planckian distances, that was the whole point. I presented this, in the context of the thread, as an example where quantum gravity effects may become important, despite one is _not_ probing distances close to the Planck scale; so this has little to do with the UV completion of gravity.

There are indications that inside of black holes macroscopic quantum effects occur (horizonless “fuzzball states”), that are extremely non-local. So what could happen in the scattering process, roughly speaking, is that one huge extended fuzzball state is created, which decays afterwards in a perfectly unitary way; and no classical black hole is ever formed.

Quote Quote by Finbar View Post
To make rash statements about the formation of black holes one must at least take three quantities into account:

1) The total energy

2) The impact parameter

3) The number of degrees of freedom

The important thing in your example is the number of degrees of freedom is very small, just those of two electrons. Roughly speaking GR is only valid when the number of degrees of freedom is very large.
Indeed so, classical GR may not be relevant at all here. This what I would tend to believe. But again, the classicalization approach tries to argue otherwise. Note (tom) that this approach vehemently denies asymptotic safety.
tom.stoer
#41
Dec31-11, 03:00 AM
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Quote Quote by suprised View Post
Indeed so, classical GR may not be relevant at all here. This what I would tend to believe. But again, the classicalization approach tries to argue otherwise. Note (tom) that this approach vehemently denies asymptotic safety.
Do you have a good reference about classicalization?

Isn't AS somthing like "classicalization" as well? It's an effective action (but as such a 'classical' expression) taking into account quantum effects via renormalized couplings - but no new structures or interactions (at least if the usual truncation remains valid).
suprised
#42
Dec31-11, 04:00 AM
P: 407
Quote Quote by tom.stoer View Post
Do you have a good reference about classicalization?

Isn't AS somthing like "classicalization" as well? It's an effective action (but as such a 'classical' expression) taking into account quantum effects via renormalized couplings - but no new structures or interactions (at least if the usual truncation remains valid).
I guess the paper cited above and refs. therein, eg. ref.3, is a good start.

No, these authors claim that the regime where AS would take place can never be probed; nothing can ever become weaker coupled than standard gravity.
atyy
#43
Dec31-11, 04:09 AM
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Suprised, from the renormalization point of view, unless there is asymptotic safety, new degrees of freedom are expected at high enough energies (and small impact parameter).

But from the unitarity point of view, from the Giddings paper you linked, there seems to be a problem at high energies and large impact parameter, so he says unitarity is really the problem. But shouldn't the two problems somehow be linked, ie. if the new degrees of freedom are properly incorporated, the problem should go away?
suprised
#44
Dec31-11, 04:30 AM
P: 407
Quote Quote by atyy View Post
Suprised, from the renormalization point of view, unless there is asymptotic safety, new degrees of freedom are expected at high enough energies (and small impact parameter).

But from the unitarity point of view, from the Giddings paper you linked, there seems to be a problem at high energies and large impact parameter, so he says unitarity is really the problem. But shouldn't the two problems somehow be linked, ie. if the new degrees of freedom are properly incorporated, the problem should go away?
Yes this is likely related and the expectation is of course that the problem goes away in a proper formulation of quantum gravity, but how does this work precisely? There were some attempts from AdS/CFT, but I don't quite recall now as to how far this could be pushed.

On the other hand, the classicalization people claim that new degrees of freedom are not required, since the ultra-high energy regime maps back to classical physics.
Finbar
#45
Dec31-11, 07:09 AM
P: 343
Quote Quote by suprised View Post

With the large impact parameter they will never reach Planckian distances, that was the whole point. I presented this, in the context of the thread, as an example where quantum gravity effects may become important, despite one is _not_ probing distances close to the Planck scale; so this has little to do with the UV completion of gravity.
If we assume that a black hole does form then they do reach Planckian distances when they collapse towards the singularity. The two electrons are attracted to each other my gravity so they will not remain 2km apart. So we can only say that the UV effects can be ignored if they are hidden behind the horizon. But the existence of the horizon really depends on the whole dynamical history of the electrons. So we can't really assume that a black hole does form. So I would say that the idea that we can ignore the UV is actually circular logic.
friend
#46
Dec31-11, 12:03 PM
P: 969
I just had a thought, perhaps this is the best place for it.

Considering the nature of spacetime and QFT, as I understand it, virtual particles pop into existence, travel about, and then come back together such that the uncertainty principle is not violated. But how much space do the virtual particles travel through before coming back together? And how can you define space without events in the form of particle trajectories that establish the concept of relative distances? It may be that we cannot define one without the other. And the ultimate equations will have to account for both in a single equation.
Dickfore
#47
Dec31-11, 01:56 PM
P: 3,014
Quote Quote by tom.stoer View Post
Have a lokk at the ADM formulation of GR

http://arxiv.org/abs/gr-qc/0405109
The Dynamics of General Relativity
R. Arnowitt (Syracuse Univ.), S. Deser (Brandeis Univ.), C. W. Misner (Princeton Univ.)
(Submitted on 19 May 2004)
Abstract: This article--summarizing the authors' then novel formulation of General Relativity--appeared as Chapter 7 of an often cited compendium edited by L. Witten in 1962, which is now long out of print. Intentionally unretouched, this posting is intended to provide contemporary accessibility to the flavor of the original ideas. Some typographical corrections have been made: footnote and page numbering have changed--but not section nor equation numbering etc.

The 'gauge symmetry' is related to the diffeomorphism invariance
What specifically should I look for? I don't feel like going through a whole chapter of a textbook.
tom.stoer
#48
Jan1-12, 05:21 AM
Sci Advisor
P: 5,366
The canonical variables and the constraints are defined in section 3-2 and chapter 4
friend
#49
Jan4-12, 11:30 AM
P: 969
Quote Quote by friend View Post
Considering the nature of spacetime and QFT, as I understand it, virtual particles pop into existence, travel about, and then come back together such that the uncertainty principle is not violated. But how much space do the virtual particles travel through before coming back together? And how can you define space without events in the form of particle trajectories that establish the concept of relative distances? It may be that we cannot define one without the other. And the ultimate equations will have to account for both in a single equation.
So I'm having trouble with how some quantum gravity programmes make an effort to quantize gravity without matter or other particles of any kind. I guess they expect to couple matter into the equations at a later time. But gravity is the geometry of spacetime, and it seems the only thing that established distance in reality is the relative distance between particles. So what relavance is there to quantizing geometry without respect to particles. Even virtual particles would at least give us a a source of particles between which there is distance, right? So it seems we have to quantize gravity with respect to QFT or we're just quantizing geometry as an exercise.
tom.stoer
#50
Jan4-12, 05:53 PM
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Quote Quote by friend View Post
So I'm having trouble with how some quantum gravity programmes make an effort to quantize gravity without matter ... gravity is the geometry of spacetime ... the only thing that established distance in reality is the relative distance between particles
Good point.

But of course we know that there are vacuum solutions in GR with non-trivial dynamics (dS spacetime, black holes, brill waves, ...), so it's not totally unreasonable.
friend
#51
Jan4-12, 08:55 PM
P: 969
Quote Quote by tom.stoer View Post
Good point.

But of course we know that there are vacuum solutions in GR with non-trivial dynamics (dS spacetime, black holes, brill waves, ...), so it's not totally unreasonable.
That's why I'm thinking that this is where virtual particles come in. At least there are virtual particles in the vacuum to establish relative distances with respect to them. But if geometric quantities are justifiably quantized irrespective of particle quantization, then there is nothing to specify when to quantize and when not to quantize any geometric quantities simply because it is there. If you take away the context of QFT of particles away from the quantization of geometry, then it seems arbitrary to quantize geometry. So I think we need to formulate the problem of quantum gravity by finding geometric quantities as dynamic variables in a more diffeomorphic generalization of the usual QFT.
tom.stoer
#52
Jan5-12, 12:57 AM
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P: 5,366
I don't think that virtual particles are of any relevance as they are purely perturbative artefacts; OK, perhaps matter will play a key role, but not via virtual particles
Fra
#53
Jan5-12, 03:22 AM
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Quote Quote by suprised View Post
Well I am not talking about cosmological pictures, but just a transplanckian scattering experiment, if you wish with asymptotic oberservers. So what is the S-Matrix for this scattering? It should have a concrete answer, and better be unitary.

If you dispute the valitidy of QM and the S-Matrix - well QM has been proven to be extremely robust against deformations and so far no one, AFIAK, was able to replace it by something else. It is very common (because cheap) to say "according to my opinion QM needs somehow be modified", but very difficult to actually do it ...
Sorry for the slow response, haven't had much time lately :( a short comment.

First of all, I agree it's cheap to say you need something better, without actually showing what this better thing is. But it's still of importance to be able to distinguish problem if there is one. To cure it is hard, but it gets even harder if you don't see it first.

My objection to your transplanckian scattering picture is this: I agree with you that given a FIXED given observer, the scattering must be unitary due to consistency. The problem is that I think it's still ambigous, becaseu there is not unique "asymptotic observer", there is rather a sort of landscape of them. (I'm not talking just about string landscape, i'm talking generally).

And I do not think there exists a conventional "renormalization" picture where you can define observer invariants here.

Cheap as it may be, I think one needs to consider the backreaction on the observing context, and then referring to the "asymptotic limiting observer" sort of misses the point.

I sure don't have anything better at the moment, but I see problems with current approach, that for myself I'm not letting pass.

/Fredrik
ohwilleke
#54
Jan5-12, 12:54 PM
P: 631
@Dickfore

1. lhs means left hand side, rhs means right hand side. The reference in this case is to the conventional formulation of general relativity which on the left hand side has a tensor that represents the geometrical manifestation of gravity, and on the right hand side has a tensor called the stress energy tensor.

2. A tensor is another name for a matrix, usually in the context of a tensor that is used in the physical sciences to represent quantities analogous to vectors but that contain more data points. In the matrix that is the stress-energy tensor there is an element for each possible source of matter or energy in a given matter-energy field (e.g. rest mass, kinetic energy in three directions, pressure in three directions, electromagnetic flux in three directions, etc.) in each direction. The magnitude of each element of mass and energy in each direction contributes individually to the distortion in space-time geometry that we call gravity, so in general relativity, rather than merely the total amount of mass in Newtonian gravity mattering we care about its character and dynamics (and of course, since it is geometric, even massless stuff like photons are affected by it until Newtonian gravity) - hence we get gravitomagnetic effects (those arising from the motion of matter), etc.

3. A good quick introduction to the equations of general relativity and what each part stands for can be found in the relevant wikipedia articles, but it is all a little opaque if you don't have a good grasp of tensor mathematics (usually taught at the upper division undergraduate level to math and physics and engineering majors) and both the notion that general relativity is based on a continuous matter-energy field rather than a point sources that emit forces like Maxwell's equations, Newtonian gravity and to Standard Model interactions do and the notion that it is geometric while observing special relativity makes it all rather mind numbing and hard to process.

4. When we talk about quantitizing general relativity, several concepts are implicated: (a) general relativity is formulated with regard to continous matter-energy fields while a quantum gravity theory would operate at the level of individual particles of matter, energy; (b) general relativity envisions space-time as continuous, while quantum gravity could have a discrete space-time; (c) most theories of quantum gravity would suggest a mechanism such as force carrying by a graviton which is a spin-2 boson, rather than a mere equation that says that two continuous quantities are related in a particular way which would give gravity particle-like as well as wave-like properties; amd (d) a quantum gravity theory would probably have a mechanism that propogates these bosons via a probabilistic rather than deterministic set of rules.

5. A quantum gravity theory could have little elaboration of general relativity at all, but provide a way to incorporate gravitational effects into quantum field theory, for example, in strong gravitational fields at the boundaries of black holes and in the Big Bang. In weak gravitational fields, the corrections would be on orders of magnitude so trivial relative to Standard Model forces that we don't care. In hyperprecise applications for fairly strong fields, we do care. Point-like particles are inherently inconsistent with general relativity, in ways that don't matter in Standard Model equations, but create general relativity singularties. The QFT on curved space-time approach you mention is basically an ad hoc, non-rigorous way of pushing classical GR and Standard Model physics as far as they will go and estimating on that basis with a fair bit of artfulness what their mutual natural extensions would suggest.

6. There are two practical reasons to do this, aside from the joy of having a fully rigorous and consistent set of equations of everything. One is that there are some extreme situations where no amount of artful extensions of each is enough to resolve how GR and the Standard Model forces interact because there are multiple, mutually inconsistent ways of going about doing it and we don't have enough guidance to say. The other one is that lots of people think that while a quantum gravity theory that is true must reduce to GR in ordinary consideration that there may be new physics predicted in very weak gravitational fields in deep space (the IR limit) and in very strong fields like those of the Big Bang and black holes (the UV limit). Many people also think that by putting them together in a way that explains how matter and energy took the forms that it did after the Big Bang (baryogenesis, leptogenesis, dark matter formation, inflation, cosmic background radiation, etc.) that we might be able to discern UV behavior of not only gravity but all Standard Model forces in a way that would make clear how to unify them into a fundamental theory of everything at high energies that naturally segments into the distinct low energy four forces and x many particles we observe governed by the equations we use in a low energy limit.


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