Amit Sever

Krill Prize Laureate 2018

Amit Sever

Tel-Aviv University


The study of Quantum Field Theory, String Theory and
the holographic relation between them

One of the main open questions in our fundamental understanding of the universe is a computational description of strongly coupled phenomenon in Quantum Chromodynamics (QCD). That is the physical theory that best describes the elementary particles in nature. Another fundamental question that has troubled theoretical
physicists for decades is how to unify Quantum Field Theory (QFT), that governs the subatomic world, with General Relativity, that governs phenomena at the scale
of stars, galaxies or the entire universe. Remarkably, it turns out that under certain circumstances these two elemental questions are in fact closely related. That is, a
certain class of QFTs are equivalent to String theory or Gravity in a space-time with one more spatial dimension. My main research interest is to obtain a computational
handle on QCD at finite coupling and a deep understanding of quantum gravity. To do so, I try to solve an interacting gauge theory in four dimensions. I expect that such a
solution would play an analogues role in QFT to the one played by the Hydrogen atom in chemistry. The analog of the Hydrogen is a very special QFT model known as
N=4 SYM. It is simple enough that we can hope to solve it completely while sufficiently rich that we can hope to extract deep lessons about the foundations of QFT from
its solution. Moreover, it is a beautiful example of a gauge theory in four space-time dimensions that belong to the class of theories with a gravity or string theory dual. The
main tools in this program involve the solvability of the two-dimensional string — a surprising and powerful property named integrability. This property is the reason
that we expect to be able to solve the four-dimensional theory exactly.

The Krill Prize Winners

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