• Question: Loop quantum gravity and string theory have both leading investigations, which of these interest you??

    Asked by littlemisstiger to Davie, Gemma, James P, James V, Nuala on 3 Jul 2012.
    • Photo: James Verdon

      James Verdon answered on 3 Jul 2012:

      Hi littlemisstiger,
      I don’t know much about either to be honest. I know that they exist to link together relativity theory with quantum mechanics. Currently, relativity doesn’t work very well on the sub-atomic, quantum scale, so a number of theories, including string theory and quantum loop gravity, have been put forward to account for these issues.

      However, my job is to study volcanoes and earthquakes. So we don’t ever need to know about quantum mechanics for that. So I have no idea which one is more likely to be right.

    • Photo: Nuala Carson

      Nuala Carson answered on 3 Jul 2012:

      hey littlemisstiger,

      Like james V i dont know much about either. My knowledge base stops at Sheldon working on string theory…….. There is so much new stuff to keep up to date with in your own field its hard to understand things from other fields.

    • Photo: James Pope

      James Pope answered on 3 Jul 2012:

      Hi littlemisstiger,

      While I do find quantum mechanics and particle physics a really fascinating field, it is not my specialty so I am unable really to pass a judgement on either. As James V says, I have a broad idea of what role they play and why we have them, but beyond that nothing.

      If you develop a career in science, you do specialise, so Iearn huge amounts about climate, weather, geology and palaentology and the associated chemistry and biology, but outside of that I don’t work on anything else, so particle physics passes me by, beyond what I read in New Scientist or see on the news!