String Cosmology, or How to Test the UntestableExport this event to calendar

Tuesday, March 19, 2013 — 11:30 AM EDT

Phys10 Undergraduate Seminar Series

Dr. David Marsh, Perimeter Institute

Abstract

String theory is a rich theory that unifies quantum gravity and the fundamental forces, but it is often accused of being untestable. I will begin by introducing you to the key concepts of extra dimensions, supersymmetry, and the so-called "landscape" in string theory which lead to the complexity that makes it so rich and yet so hard to test. Next I will explain aspects of modern theoretical and observational cosmology that lead us to believe that the universe is driven by three unexplained entities in the "Dark Sector": Inflation, Dark Matter, and Dark Energy. In this setting I will show you that certain models within string theory can be tested, and that it is a fruitful playground to explain the Dark Sector in a wider context. In fact, string theory comes naturally with a Dark Sector, and it is our task to discover the physics. I will finish with an introduction to my own research on the "String Axiverse", a general feature of Dark Matter in string theory that has observational signatures that are testable with current and future cosmological surveys. With a major cosmological data release from Planck on Thursday 21st, you will be given some interesting perspectives.

Useful cosmology websites for data:

Useful and simple introduction to the CMB:

http://background.uchicago.edu/~whu/

Review of string cosmology:

https://arxiv.org/abs/0710.2951

Introduction to axiverse:

https://arxiv.org/abs/0905.4720

David Marsh's website:

https://djemarsh.wixsite.com/physics

Location 
PHY - Physics
145
200 University Avenue West

Waterloo, ON N2L 3G1
Canada

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