Daniel Sudarsky - Instituto de Ciencias Nucleares, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, Ciudad de Mexico, Mexico

Daniel Sudarsky
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Name
Daniel Sudarsky
Affiliation
Instituto de Ciencias Nucleares, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, Ciudad de Mexico, Mexico
City
Ciudad de México
Country
Mexico

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General Relativity and Quantum Cosmology (48)
 
Quantum Physics (16)
 
High Energy Physics - Theory (13)
 
Cosmology and Nongalactic Astrophysics (7)
 
High Energy Physics - Phenomenology (6)
 
Physics - History of Physics (4)
 
Astrophysics (2)
 
Physics - General Physics (1)

Publications Authored By Daniel Sudarsky

Inspired by possible connections between gravity and foundational question in quantum theory, we consider an approach for the adaptation of objective collapse models to a general relativistic context. We apply these ideas to a list of open problems in cosmology and quantum gravity, such as the emergence of seeds of cosmic structure, the black hole information issue, the problem of time in quantum gravity and, in a more speculative manner, to the nature of dark energy and the origin of the very special initial state of the universe. We conclude that objective collapse models offer a rather promising path to deal with all of these issues. Read More

We give general overview of a novel approach, recently developed by us, to address the issue black hole information paradox. This alternative viewpoint is based on theories involving modifications of standard quantum theory, known as "spontaneous dynamical state reduction" or "wave-function collapse models" which were historically developed to overcome the notorious foundational problems of quantum mechanics known as the "measurement problem". We show that these proposals, when appropriately adapted and refined for this context, provide a self-consistent picture where loss of information in the evaporation of black holes is no longer paradoxical. Read More

We reevaluate the predictions of inflation regarding primordial gravity waves, which should appear as B-modes in the CMB, in light of the fact that the standard inflationary paradigm is unable to account for the transition from an initially symmetric state into a non-symmetric outcome. We show that the incorporation of an element capable of explaining such a transition dramatically alters the prediction for the shape and size of the B-mode spectrum. In particular, we find that by adapting a realistic objective collapse model to the situation at hand, the B-mode spectrum gets strongly suppressed with respect to the standard prediction. Read More

The information loss paradox is often presented as an unavoidable consequence of well-established physics. However, in order for a genuine paradox to ensue, not-trivial assumptions about, e.g. Read More

We study a proposal for the resolution of the black hole information puzzle within the context of modified versions of quantum theory involving spontaneous reduction of the quantum state. The theories of this kind, which were developed in order to address the so called "measurement problem" in quantum theory have, in the past, been framed in a non-relativistic setting and in that form they were previously applied to the black hole information problem. Here, and for the first time, we show in a simple toy model, a treatment of the problem within a fully relativistic setting. Read More

In this letter, we consider the possibility of reconciling metric theories of gravitation with violation of the conservation of energy-momentum. Under some circumstances, this can be achieved in the context of unimodular gravity, and it leads to the emergence of an effective cosmological constant in Einstein's equation. We specifically investigate two potential sources of energy non-conservation ---non-unitary modifications of quantum mechanics, and phenomenological models motivated by quantum gravity theories with spacetime discreteness at the Planck scale--- and show that such locally negligible phenomena can nevertheless become relevant at the cosmological scale. Read More

We put forward a proposal that combines objective collapse models, developed in connection with quantum-foundational questions, with the so-called Weyl curvature hypothesis, introduced by Roger Penrose as an attempt to account for the very special initial state of the universe. In particular, we explain how a curvature dependence of the collapse rate in such models, an idea already shown to help in the context of black holes and information loss, could also offer a dynamical justification for Penrose's conjecture. Read More

Most theories that predict time and/or space variation of fundamental constants also predict violations of the Weak Equivalence Principle (WEP). Khoury and Weltman proposed the chameleon model and claimed that this model avoids experimental bounds on the WEP. We present a contrasting view based on the analysis of the force between two bodies induced by the chameleon field using a particular approach in which the field due to both the large and the small bodies is obtained by appropriate series expansions in the various regions of interest and the corresponding matching conditions. Read More

We present a series of arguments against the results of the paper "Universal decoherence due to gravitational time dilation" by Pikovski et al. (arXiv:1311.1095). Read More

The statistical properties of the primordial density perturbations has been considered in the past decade as a powerful probe of the physical processes taking place in the early universe. Within the inflationary paradigm, the properties of the bispectrum are one of the keys that serves to discriminate among competing scenarios concerning the details of the origin of cosmological perturbations. However, all of the scenarios, based on the conventional approach to the so-called "quantum-to-classical transition" during inflation, lack the ability to point out the precise physical mechanism responsible for generating the inhomogeneity and anisotropy of our universe starting from and exactly homogeneous and isotropic vacuum state associated with the early inflationary regime. Read More

The difficult issues related to the interpretation of quantum mechanics and, in particular, the "measurement problem" are revisited using as motivation the process of generation of structure from quantum fluctuations in inflationary cosmology. The unessential mathematical complexity of the particular problem is bypassed, facilitating the discussion of the conceptual issues, by considering, within the paradigm set up by the cosmological problem, another problem where symmetry serves as a focal point: a simplified version of Mott's problem. Read More

In this work, we consider the problem of the emergence of seeds of cosmic structure in the framework of the non-inflationary model proposed by Hollands and Wald. In particular, we consider a modification to that proposal designed to account for breaking the symmetries of the initial quantum state, leading to the generation of the primordial inhomogeneities. This new ingredient is described in terms of a spontaneous reduction of the wave function. Read More

We consider a novel approach to address the black hole information paradox (BHIP). The idea is based on adapting, to the situation at hand, the modified versions of quantum theory involving spontaneous stochastic dynamical collapse of quantum states, which have been considered in attempts to deal with shortcomings of the standard Copenhagen interpretation of quantum mechanics, in particular, the issue known as "the measurement problem". The new basic hypothesis is that the modified quantum behavior is enhanced in the region of high curvature so that the information encoded in the initial quantum state of the matter fields is rapidly erased as the black hole singularity is approached. Read More

The process of black hole evaporation resulting from the Hawking effect has generated an intense controversy regarding its potential conflict with quantum mechanics' unitary evolution. In a recent couple of works of a collaboration involving one of us, we have revised the controversy with the aims of, on the one hand, clarifying some conceptual issues surrounding it, and, at the same time, arguing that collapse theories have the potential to offer a satisfactory resolution of the so-called paradox. Here we show an explicit calculation supporting this claim using a simplified model of black hole creation and evaporation, known as the CGHS model, together with a dynamical reduction theory, known as CSL, and some speculative, but seemingly natural ideas about the role of quantum gravity in connection with the would-be singularity. Read More

The primordial bispectrum has been considered in the past decade as a powerful probe of the physical processes taking place in the early Universe. Within the inflationary paradigm, the properties of the bispectrum are one of the keys that serves to discriminate among competing scenarios concerning the details of the origin of cosmological perturbations. However, all of the scenarios, based on the conventional approach to the so-called "quantum-to-classical transition" during inflation, lack the ability to point out the precise physical mechanism responsible for generating the inhomogeneity and anisotropy of our Universe starting from and exactly homogeneous and isotropic vacuum state associated with the early inflationary regime. Read More

Most theories that predict time and/or space variation of fundamental constants also predict violations of the Weak Equivalence Principle (WEP). Khoury and Weltmann proposed the chameleon model in 2004 and claimed that this model avoids experimental bounds on WEP. We present a contrasting view based on an approximate calculation of the two body problem for the chameleon field and show that the force depends on the test body composition. Read More

We display a number of advantages of objective collapse theories for the resolution of long-standing problems in cosmology and quantum gravity. In particular, we examine applications of objective reduction models to three important issues: the origin of the seeds of cosmic structure, the problem of time in quantum gravity and the information loss paradox; we show how reduction models contain the necessary tools to provide solutions for these issues. We wrap up with an adventurous proposal, which relates the spontaneous collapse events of objective collapse models to microscopic virtual black holes. Read More

We critically evaluate the treatment of the notion of measurement in the Consistent Histories approach to quantum mechanics. We find such a treatment unsatisfactory because it relies, often implicitly, on elements external to those provided by the formalism. In particular, we note that, in order for the formalism to be informative when dealing with measurement scenarios, one needs to assume that the appropriate choice of framework is such that apparatuses are always in states of well defined pointer positions after measurements. Read More

There is a persistent state of confusion regarding the nature of the Unruh effect. We will argue that, in contrast to some interpretations thereof, the effect does not represent any novel physics and that, by its very nature, the effect is fundamentally unmeasurable in all experiments of the kind that have been contemplated until now. Also, we discuss what aspects connected with this effect one might consider as possibilities to be explored empirically and what their precise meaning may be regarding the issue at hand. Read More

The Consistent Histories (CH) formalism aims at a quantum mechanical framework which could be applied even to the universe as a whole. CH stresses the importance of histories for quantum mechanics, as opposed to measurements, and maintains that a satisfactory formulation of quantum mechanics allows one to assign probabilities to alternative histories of a quantum system. It further proposes that each realm, that is, each set of histories to which probabilities can be assigned, provides a valid quantum-mechanical account, but that different realms can be mutually incompatible. Read More

We consider a search for phenomenological signatures from an hypothetical space-time granularity that respects Lorentz invariance. The model is based on the idea that the metric description of Einstein's gravity corresponds to a hydrodynamic characterization of some deeper underlying structure, and that Einstein's gravity is thus to be seen as emergent. We present the specific phenomenological model in detail and analyze the bounds on its free parameters established by a experiment specifically designed to test this model. Read More

Traditional geometry employs idealized concepts like that of a point or a curve, the operational definition of which relies on the availability of classical point particles as probes. Real, physical objects are quantum in nature though, leading us to consider the implications of using realistic probes in defining an effective spacetime geometry. As an example, we consider de Sitter spacetime and employ the centroid of various composite probes to obtain its effective sectional curvature, which is found to depend on the probe's internal energy, spatial extension, and spin. Read More

We briefly review an important shortcoming --unearthed in previous works-- of the standard version of the inflationary model for the emergence of the seeds of cosmic structure. We consider here some consequences emerging from a proposal inspired on ideas of Penrose and Di\'osi about a quantum-gravity induced reduction of the wave function, which has been put forward to address the shortcomings, arguing that its effect on the inflaton field is what can lead to the emergence of the seeds of cosmic structure. The proposal leads to a deviation of the primordial spectrum from the scale-invariant Harrison-Zel'dovich one, and consequently, to a different CMB power spectrum. Read More

Inflation is considered one of the cornerstones of modern cosmology. However, the account of the origin of cosmic structure, as provided by the standard inflationary paradigm, is not fully satisfactory. The fundamental issue is the inability of the usual account to point out the physical mechanism responsible for generating the inhomogeneity and anisotropy of our Universe, starting from the exactly homogeneous and isotropic vacuum state associated with the early inflationary regime. Read More

Inflation plays a central role in our current understanding of the universe. According to the standard viewpoint, the homogeneous and isotropic mode of the inflaton field drove an early phase of nearly exponential expansion of the universe, while the quantum fluctuations (uncertainties) of the other modes gave rise to the seeds of cosmic structure. However, if we accept that the accelerated expansion led the universe into an essentially homogeneous and isotropic space-time, with the state of all the matter fields in their vacuum (except for the zero mode of the inflaton field), we can not escape the conclusion that the state of the universe as a whole would remain always homogeneous and isotropic. Read More

The usual account for the origin of cosmic structure during inflation is not fully satisfactory, as it lacks a physical mechanism capable of generating the inhomogeneity and anisotropy of our Universe, from an exactly homogeneous and isotropic initial state associated with the early inflationary regime. The proposal in [A. Perez, H. Read More

It has been argued that the standard inflationary scenario suffers from a serious deficiency as a model for the origin of the seeds of cosmic structure: it can not truly account for the transition from an early homogeneous and isotropic stage to another one lacking such symmetries. The issue has often been thought as a standard instance of the "quantum measurement problem", but as has been recently argued by some of us the situation reaches a critical level in the cosmological context of interest here. This has lead to a proposal in which the standard paradigm is supplemented by a hypothesis concerning the self-induced dynamical collapse of the wave function, as representing the physical mechanism through which such change of symmetry is brought forth. Read More

The standard inflationary account for the origin of cosmic structure is, without a doubt, extremely successful. However, it is not fully satisfactory as has been argued in [A. Perez, H. Read More

Seeking a possible explanation for recent data indicating a space-time variation of the electron-to-proton mass ratio within the Milky Way, we consider a phenomenological model where the effective fermion masses depend on the local value of the Weyl tensor. We contrast the required values of the model's free parameters with bounds obtained from modern tests on the violation of the Weak Equivalence Principle and we find that these quantities are incompatible. This result indicates that the variation of nucleon and electron masses through a coupling with the Weyl tensor is not a viable model. Read More

The inflationary paradigm enjoys a very wide acceptance in the cosmological community, due in large part to the fact that it is said to "naturally account" for a nearly scale independent power primordial spectrum of fluctuations which is in very good agreement with the observations. The expected overall scale of the fluctuations in most models, turns out to be too large, because it is inversely proportional to the slow roll parameter, which is expected to be very small. This fact requires the fine tuning of the inflaton potential. Read More

In this work we show that the spin pendulum techniques developed by the E\:{o}t-Wash group could be used to put very stringent bounds on the free parameters of a Lorentz invariant phenomenological model of quantum gravity. The model is briefly described as well as the experimental setup that we have in mind. Read More

There is a persistent state of confusion regarding the account of the quantum origin of the seeds of cosmological structure during inflation. In fact, a recent article (C. Kiefer & D. Read More

Inflationary cosmology has, in the last few years,received a strong dose of support from observations. The fact that the fluctuation spectrum can be extracted from the inflationary scenario through an analysis that involves quantum field theory in curved space-time, and that it coincides with the observational data has lead to a certain complacency in the community, which prevents the critical analysis of the obscure spots in the derivation. We argue here briefly, as we have discussed in more detail elsewhere, that there is something important missing in our understanding of the origin of the seeds of Cosmic Structure, as is evidenced by the fact that in the standard accounts the inhomogeneity and anisotropy of our universe seems to emerge from an exactly homogeneous andisotropic initial state through processes that do not break those symmetries. Read More

We review the usual account of the phenomena of spontaneous symmetry breaking (SSB), pointing out the common misunderstandings surrounding the issue, in particular within the context of quantum field theory. In fact, the common explanations one finds in this context, indicate that under certain conditions corresponding to the situation called SSB, the vacuum of the theory does not share the symmetries of the Lagrangian. We explain in detail why this statement is incorrect in general, and in what limited set of circumstances such situation could arise. Read More

We describe a refined version of a previous proposal for the exploration of quantum gravity phenomenology. Unlike the original scheme, the one presented here is free from sign ambiguities while it shares with the previous one the essential features. It focuses on effects that could be thought as arising from a fundamental granularity of quantum space-time. Read More

2008Jan
Affiliations: 1Instituto de Ciencias Nucleares, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, Ciudad de Mexico, Mexico, 2Instituto de Ciencias Nucleares, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, Ciudad de Mexico, Mexico

The standard inflationary version of the origin of the cosmic structure as the result of the quantum fluctuations during the early universe is less than fully satisfactory as has been argued in [A. Perez, H. Sahlmann, and D. Read More

We offer a critical assessment of some generic features of various of the current approaches towards the construction of a Theory of Quantum Gravity. We will argue that there is a need for further conceptual clarifications before such an enterprise can be launched on a truly well grounded setting, and that one of the guiding principles that can be viewed as part of the reasons for successes of the past theoretical developments is the identification of Unspeakables: Concepts that should not only play no role in the formulation of the theories, but ones that the formalism of the theory itself should prevent from ever been spoken about. Read More

This paper contains a critique of the standard inflationary account of the origin of cosmological structures from quantum fluctuations in the early universe. This critique can be thought to be purely philosophical in nature, but I prefer to view it, rather, as arising from the need to put the interpretational aspects of the theory -which quite obviously lie at the basis of any comparison with experiments- on the firm grounds required by the unique features of the problem at hand. This discussion is followed by a proposal to complement that treatment to deal with the unsatisfactory aspects of the standard account of the problem, using Penrose's ideas about the quantum gravity induced collapse of the quantum states of matter fields. Read More

We describe a scheme for the exploration of quantum gravity phenomenology focussing on effects that could be thought as arising from a fundamental granularity of space-time. In contrast with the simplest assumptions, such granularity is assumed to respect Lorentz Invariance but is otherwise left unspecified. The proposal is fully observer covariant, it involves non-trivial couplings of curvature to matter fields and leads to a well defined phenomenology. Read More

This article reviews a recent work by a couple of colleagues and myself about the shortcomings of the standard explanations of the quantum origin of cosmic structure in the inflationary scenario, and a proposal to address them. The point it that in the usual accounts the inhomogeneity and anisotropy of our universe seem to emerge from an exactly homogeneous and isotropic initial state through processes that do not break those symmetries. We argued that some novel aspect of physics must be called upon to able to address the problem in a fully satisfactory way. Read More

There is something missing in our understanding of the origin of the seeds of Cosmic Structuture. The fact that the fluctuation spectrum can be extracted from the inflationary scenario through an analysis that involves quantum field theory in curved space-time, and that it coincides with the observational data has lead to a certain complacency in the community, which prevents the critical analysis of the obscure spots in the derivation. The point is that the inhomogeneity and anisotropy of our universe seem to emerge from an exactly homogeneous and isotropic initial state through processes that do not break those symmetries. Read More

We consider the possibility that the particles in the Ultra High Energy Cosmic Rays arriving to Earth might be neutrons instead of protons. We stress that in such case the argument for the GZK cutoff is weaker and that it is conceivable that neutrons would not be affected by it. This scenario would require the neutron to start with an energy larger than the observed one, in order to be able to travel the distances involved, within its proper life-time. Read More

The notion that gravitation might lead to a breakdown of standard space-time structure at small distances, and that this might affect the propagation of ordinary particles has led to a program to search for violations of Lorentz invariance as a probe of quantum gravity. Initially it was expected that observable macroscopic effects caused by microscopic violations of Lorentz invariance would necessarily be suppressed by at least one power of the small ratio between the Planck length and macroscopic lengths. Here we discuss the implications of the fact that this expectation is in contradiction with standard properties of radiative corrections in quantum field theories. Read More

The idea that quantum gravity manifestations would be associated with a violation of Lorentz invariance is very strongly bounded and faces serious theoretical challenges. Other related ideas seem to be drowning in interpretational quagmires. This leads us to consider alternative lines of thought for such phenomenological search. Read More

The current understanding of the quantum origin of cosmic structure is discussed critically. We point out that in the existing treatments a transition from a symmetric quantum state to an (essentially classical) non-symmetric state is implicitly assumed, but not specified or analyzed in any detail. In facing the issue we are led to conclude that new physics is required to explain the apparent predictive power of the usual schemes. Read More

The idea that quantum gravity manifestations would be associated with a violation of Lorentz invariance is very strongly bounded and faces serious theoretical challenges. This leads us to consider an alternative line of thought for such phenomenological search. We discuss the underlying viewpoint and briefly mention its possible connections with current theoretical ideas. Read More

OBITUARY The Article and we have been friends for more than half a year. With it, we shared many experiences, both in planetary dynamics and field theory. This research is something I shall always remember with a smile on my face, and a pain in my heart. Read More

We review the arguments and counter arguments about the recent proposal for generic censorship violation. In particular the argument made in gr-qc/0405050 against our proposal for a possible expanding domain wall that could encompass a large black hole, is shown to have a serious flaw. Other problems of the original idea are also discussed. Read More