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Monday, October 18, 2021 at 4:00pm to 5:00pm
Rockefeller Hall, Schwartz Auditorium
General Physics Colloquium, Professor Tom Hartman, Cornell University
Title: Do Black Holes Obey Quantum Mechanics?
Host: Eanna Flanagan
Abstract: Black holes seem to destroy information, violating a basic principle of quantum mechanics. This is Hawking's information paradox, which could lead to dramatic effects around black holes but remains unresolved after 45 years. I will review the status of the paradox and describe recent progress on calculating the entropy of Hawking radiation. Surprisingly, there is a large effect from quantum wormholes connecting distant regions in spacetime that plays a crucial role. The results support the idea that black holes do behave like ordinary quantum systems, but only when viewed from the outside. The new effect is driven by quantum entanglement and is part of a broader program to relate geometry to quantum information, a perspective that offers some tantalizing hints toward a deeper understanding of quantum gravity.
This talk will also be available via Zoom, and the link will be emailed to the Physics listserv the week of the talk. If you are not on the listserv, please contact Sue Sullivan at firstname.lastname@example.org by Monday at 3:00 pm to request the link.