Chern-Simons-like Theories of Gravity

Wouter Merbis

Research output: ThesisThesis fully internal (DIV)

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Abstract

Gravity is perhaps the most well-known force of nature to the majority of the people, but to a theoretical physicist it remains the most enigmatic one. In modern day physics the gravitational force is related to a number of deep mysteries of the universe in which we live. For instance: what is the correct quantum theory of gravity? How did the universe evolve? What are dark matter and dark energy? One way to look at gravity is as a theory for interacting spin 2 particles called gravitons. These gravitons are thought to be massless particles. In this thesis we explore the possibility and feasibility of theories describing gravitons with a small mass in a simplified setting: in two spatial dimensions. Most notably we consider massive gravitons interacting with massless ones and develop a theoretical framework which is classically self-consistent. The way these models are constructed is novel and it may lead to new cosmological applications if it can be successfully generalized to three spatial dimensions.
Translated title of the contributionChern-Simons-achtige Theorieën van Zwaartekracht
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
Awarding Institution
  • University of Groningen
Supervisors/Advisors
  • Bergshoeff, Eric, Supervisor
Award date26-Sep-2014
Publisher
Print ISBNs978-90-367-7274-7
Electronic ISBNs978-90-367-7273-0
Publication statusPublished - 2014

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