Cosmology and cosmological implications of quantum gravity. Observable effects in cosmology help to identify the limits of general relativity, which could potentially be surpassed by modified theories of gravity and/or quantum gravity.
Cosmology of the early universe; theory and detection of gravitational waves, e.g. from the violent last stages of inspiral as two orbiting black holes coalesce. Using cutting edge quantum physics in designing practical, ultra sensitive gravitational wave detectors.
Applications of quantum theory to cryptography and computation; understanding in more concrete, physical terms what quantum theory is telling us about the nature of reality. Applications of information theory to better understand the quantum “wave function”.
Applications of the quantum nature of our universe to potential new technologies like quantum cryptography and quantum computation. In particular, theoretical developments such as fault-tolerant quantum codes and protocols for quantum error correction.
Theoretical models for cosmology – from standard to exotic (e.g. cosmic strings and monopoles). “Quantum creation” of multiple universes out of nothing; eternal inflation and the anthropic selection of a world that would ultimately become hospitable to life.
Applying the lessons learned in quantum information theory to gain a better understanding of quantum mechanics itself. Is quantum theory simply a new type of probability theory? Exploring new directions towards combining quantum theory with gravity.
Many aspects of string theory, ranging from its mathematical structure and various formulations, to possible implications for black holes and cosmology. Using string phenomenology to connect theory with reality, i.e. string mathematics with elementary particle physics.
Physics beyond the standard model: theories of elementary particles with extra space dimensions (large, small, warped and flat); supersymmetry; grand unification; dark matter; inflation and dark energy; as well as relationships between the different subjects.
Mathematical aspects of modern theories of elementary particles and gravitation. Replacing the notion of particles with fundamental abstract fields (magnetic monopoles, vortices and Skyrmions) in an attempt to approach a formulation for quantum gravity.
Cosmology as a natural meeting ground for fundamental theory (e.g. superstring theory or quantum gravity) and observations. Exploring how seeds laid down in the very early universe developed into the large scale structure we observe in the universe today.
What, exactly, happened around the time of the Big Bang? Exploring new models inspired by superstring theory and supergravity, e.g. ones in which we live on “branes” that collide with a “big bang”. Satellite experiments to test such models.