Di, 07.11.2023 14:00

Casimir cosmology

In 1998 astronomers discovered that the expansion of the universe is accelerating. Somehow, something must have made gravity repulsive on cosmological scales.

This something was called dark energy; it is described by Einstein’s cosmological constant; and it amounts to about 70% of the total mass of the universe. It has been conjectured that the cosmological constant is a form of vacuum energy, but its prediction from quantum field theory has failed by many orders of magnitude. The seminar shows how a theory informed by empirical evidence on Casimir forces does produce the correct order of magnitude and agrees with astronomical data, and how subtle this is.



Speaker: Ulf Leonhardt (Weizmann Institute of Science, Israel)


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