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Previous Programs

2016 Physics of the Observer
2016 Awardees

2015 The Physics of What Happens
2015 Awardees

2013 Physics of Information
2013 Awardees

2010 The Nature of Time
2010 Awardees

2008 Foundational Questions in Physics and Cosmology
2008 Awardees

2006 Foundational Questions in Physics and Cosmology
2006 Awardees

Dr. Roderich Tumulka
Eberhard-Karls-Universitaet

Co-Investigators

Sheldon Goldstein, Rutgers University
Tim Maudlin, Rutgers University
Nino Zanghi, Universita di Genova

Project Title

Bohmian Mechanics at Space-Time Singularities

Project Summary

Quantum mechanics has been plagued by paradoxes since its inception, and was criticized for this particularly by Einstein. Arguably, the simplest and most elegant solution to these paradoxes known to date is a theory called Bohmian mechanics. It provides an explanation how quantum phenomena work, whereas conventional quantum mechanics limits itself to describing what observers see. In this project, we plan to use Bohmian ideas to develop a possible solution to another mystery of quantum physics: How do quantum particles behave inside a black hole, the object predicted by Einstein's General Theory of Relativity in which gravity is so strong that even light cannot escape, and into which no observer can look?

Our solution will require a new version of Bohm's law of motion, involving drastic changes from the normal version to make it suitable in the presence of a "singularity," the points inside a black hole where gravity becomes literally infinite. We want to confirm what has been suggested by preliminary research: that any matter touching the singularity gets destroyed, but for certain types of singularities, surprisingly, there arises the possibility of particle creation by the singularity in very much the same way that an electron can create photons.



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