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Zero-point energy in empty space

  1. Aug 13, 2011 #1
    Could the zero-point field energy at each point in empty space be zero because it is canceled by its own negative gravitational self-energy?

    Inside particles zero-point energy modes that are larger than the particle size are excluded leading to an excess negative gravitational energy inside the particles. The resulting negative pressure holding the particles of matter together could be the source of the accelerating expansion of the Universe.
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2011
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 13, 2011 #2
    There's no way to answer this question definitively right now since there's no working theory of quantum gravity, but it at least sounds plausible to me. Then again, I'm no expert.

    My understanding, however, is that it doesn't matter what the actual value of the zero-point energy field is, because only relative energy values matter.

    That said, perhaps a working theory of quantum gravity would be able to determine the zero-point energy of the gravitational field, which might be the cause of the expansion.
     
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