Prof. Francesco Marino
CNR (building F), room 2, via Madonna del Piano 10, Sesto Fiorentino
Published on-line at 12:33:45 PM on Tuesday, February 12th, 2013
Gravitational bar detectors set limits to Planck-scale physics on macroscopic variables
First seminar in the series "Sguardi sulla complessità" on complexity by CSDC, ISC and Physics Dept. of CNR and Università di Firenze.
Different approaches to quantum gravity, such as string theory and loop quantum gravity, as well as doubly special relativity and gedanken experiments in black-hole physics, all indicate the existence of a minimal measurable scale, of the order of the Planck length, Lp = √( ℏ G / c3 ) = 1.6 x 10-35 m. This observation has motivated the proposal of generalized uncertainty relations, which imply changes in the energy spectrum of quantum systems. As a consequence, quantum gravitational effects could be revealed by experiments able to test deviations from standard quantum mechanics. In this framework, it has been recently proposed to test quantum gravitational modifications of the canonical commutator of the centre of mass of a massive object. Here we exploit the sub-millikelvin cooling of the normal modes of the ton-scale gravitational wave detector AURIGA, to place an upper limit for possible Planck-scale modifications on the ground-state energy of an oscillator. Future experiments to test the non-smooth texture of spacetime are finally discussed.
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