This is my second post concerning a question I had from Hawkings book. I am completely new to this subject, and lack the mathematical background necessary to fully understand these concepts, but I hope that by posting my question I will at least not be so confused about it after receiving some responses.(adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({});

Hawking says there is an infinite amount of ground state energy because there is no limit to how short the wavelengths of the Maxwell field can be.

A quote "..each wavelength would have a ground state energy. Since there is no limit to how short the wavelengths of the Maxwell field can be, there are an infinite number of different wavelengths in any region of spacetime and an infinite amount of ground state energy. Because energy density is, like matter, a source of gravity, this infinite energy density ought to mean there is enough gravitational attraction in the universe to curl spacetime into a single point, which obviously hasn't happened."

My understanding is that there are an infinite number of possible wavelengths, not infinite existing wavelengths as he seems to think there are, since there is only a finite number of waves. Wouldn't this explain the problem? Or am I missing something?

Thanks for any help.

**Physics Forums | Science Articles, Homework Help, Discussion**

Dismiss Notice

Join Physics Forums Today!

The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

# Maxwell field, ground state energy, 'The Universe in a Nutshell' help

**Physics Forums | Science Articles, Homework Help, Discussion**