153 research outputs found

    Implications of the Higgs discovery for gravity and cosmology

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    The discovery of the Higgs boson is one of the greatest discoveries in this century. The standard model is finally complete. Apart from its significance in particle physics, this discovery has profound implications for gravity and cosmology in particular. Many perturbative quantum gravity interactions involving scalars are not suppressed by powers of Planck mass. Since gravity couples anything with mass to anything with mass, then Higgs must be strongly coupled to any other fundamental scalar in nature, even if the gauge couplings are absent in the original Lagrangian. Since the LHC data indicate that the Higgs is very much standard model-like, there is very little room for non-standard model processes, e.g. invisible decays. This severely complicates any model that involves light enough scalar that the Higgs can kinematically decay to. Most notably, these are the quintessence models, models including light axions, and light scalar dark matter models.Comment: Essay written for the Gravity Research Foundation 2013 Awards for Essays on Gravitation. Honorable mention. Accepted for publicatio

    Neutrino Zero Modes and Stability of Electroweak Strings

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    We discuss massless and massive neutrino zero modes in the background of an electroweak string. We argue that the eventual absence of the neutrino zero mode implies the existence of topologically stable strings where the required non-trivial topology has been induced by the fermionic sector.Comment: 6 pages, 2 figures, Presented at DPF 2000: The Meeting of the Division of Particles and Fields of the American Physical Society, Columbus, Ohio, 9-12 Aug 2000. Proceedings to be published in International Journal of Modern Physics

    Emergent Spacetime in Stochastically Evolving Dimensions

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    Changing the dimensionality of the space-time at the smallest and largest distances has manifold theoretical advantages. If the space is lower dimensional in the high energy regime, then there are no ultraviolet divergencies in field theories, it is possible to quantize gravity, and the theory of matter plus gravity is free of divergencies or renormalizable. If the space is higher dimensional at cosmological scales, then some cosmological problems (including the cosmological constant problem) can be attacked from a completely new perspective. In this paper, we construct an explicit model of "evolving dimensions" in which the dimensions open up as the temperature of the universe drops. We adopt the string theory framework in which the dimensions are fields that live on the string worldsheet, and add temperature dependent mass terms for them. At the Big Bang, all the dimensions are very heavy and are not excited. As the universe cools down, dimensions open up one by one. Thus, the dimensionality of the space we live in depends on the energy or temperature that we are probing. In particular, we provide a kinematic Brandenberger-Vafa argument for how a discrete {\it causal set}, and eventually a continuum (3+1)(3+1)-dim spacetime along with Einstein gravity emerge in the Infrared from the worldsheet action. The (3+1)(3+1)-dim Planck mass and the string scale become directly related, {\it without any} compactification. Amongst other predictions, we argue that LHC might be blind to new physics even if it comes at the TeV scale. In contrast, cosmic ray experiments, especially those that can register the very beginning of the shower, and collisions with high multiplicity and density of particles, might be sensitive to the dimensional cross-over.Comment: Published in Phys.Lett. B739 (2014) 117-12