Professor, Physics & Astronomy
Chair, Physics & Astronomy
Research/Areas of Interest:
Theoretical cosmology, quantum field theory, models for quantum gravity effects
My current research involves several related topics in quantum fluctuation phenomena, with applications to gravitation and cosmology. One topic is the study of energy density fluctuations for quantum fields such as the electromagnetic field. My collaborators and I have shown that large vacuum energy density fluctuations are more probable than previously expected. These large fluctuations can drive quantum fluctuations of gravity and provide insight into effects in quantum gravity, an area which is not well understood. Energy density fluctuations may also produce observable effects in atomic or condensed matter systems, and may play a role in the evolution of the early universe. I am also working on analog models for quantum gravity, in which quantum fluctuations in a nonlinear optical material might produce fluctuations in the speed of light, analogous to an effect expected in quantum gravity.
- PhD Physics, Princeton University, Princeton, United States, 1974
- MA Physics, Princeton University, Princeton, United States, 1971
- BS Physics, Michigan State University, East Lansing, United States, 1970