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ResearchVan Swinderen Institute

Prof. dr. Erik Verlinde, University of Amsterdam: The Entropic Origin of Gravity


18 March 2010 FWN-Building 5111.0080, Nijenborgh 4, 9747 AG, Groningen
Speaker: Prof. dr. Erik Verlinde
Affiliation: University of Amsterdam
Title: The Entropic Origin of Gravity
Date: 18-03-2010
Start: 16.00
Location: FWN-Building 5111.0080
Host: Diederik Roest


Theoretical insights from black hole physics combined with recent developments in string theory suggest that at a microscopic level the Universe has a holographic description in terms of degrees of freedom that live on the boundary of space. This is called the "holographic principle". By taking the holographic principle as starting point a simple dimensional argument naturally leads to the emergence of gravity as described by the laws of Newton, or after a relativistic
generalization by the Einstein equations. At a microscopic level the gravitational force is caused by a change in the amount of information, measured by entropy, as a result of the displacements of bodies. Hence, gravity is an entropic force. String theory provides an effective framework in which the entropic origin of gravity can be made manifest. Finally, I discuss the possible implications for quantum mechanics and cosmology.

Last modified:12 September 2014 11.22 a.m.