Dear Physics Society Members,
We are going to have a talk on cosmological constant problem (Vacuum catastrophe) coming Saturday at 19:15. As far as I know, Cosmological constant problem is the biggest disagreement between experimental observation and theoretical prediction in the whole of Science. History has taught us that Physics thrives on crisis ( UV Catastrophe and birth of QM, failure of ether theory and birth of Relativity), so this ridiculous disagreement might also signal new Physics on the corner which is a good motivation for young physicists. The structure of the talk will be:
- Character of Physical Laws
- Brief Introduction to General relativity (Why Einstein called cosmological constant his biggest blunder?)
- How infinities comes in classical and quantum electrodynamics?
- Success of Quantum Field theory
- Vacuum Energy (Casimir effect and Lamb Shift)
- Dark energy and return of Cosmological constant
- Vacuum Catastrophe
- New Physics in Planckian scale
There are several good references in internet. Most popular one is by S. Weinberg https://journals.aps.org/rmp/abstract/10.1103/RevModPhys.61.1. Other good reference might be "QFT in a nutshell by Zee" and "Road to reality by Penrose".
Instead of using heavy mathematics, we will together try to develop a physical intuition of the situation. If time permits, we can also discuss other interesting open problem in condensed physics like "High Temperature Superconductivity".