Effective methods for quantum theories

Open Access
Author:
Brahma, Suddhasattwa
Graduate Program:
Physics
Degree:
Doctor of Philosophy
Document Type:
Dissertation
Date of Defense:
October 09, 2015
Committee Members:
  • Martin Bojowald, Dissertation Advisor
  • Sarah Elizabeth Shandera, Committee Member
  • Murat Gunaydin, Committee Member
  • Nigel David Higson, Committee Member
Keywords:
  • Effective theory
  • Canonical quantum gravity
  • Loop quantum gravity
  • Non-associative algebras
  • semi-classical methods
Abstract:
Whenever a full theory is unavailable, effective frameworks serve as powerful tools for examining physical phenomena below some energy scale. However, standard quantum field theory techniques are not always applicable in various exotic, yet physically relevant, systems. This thesis presents a new effective method for quantum theories, which is particularly tailored towards background independent theories such as gravity. Our main motivation is to utilize these techniques to extract the semi-classical dynamics from canonical quantum gravity theories. Application to field theoretic toy models of loop quantum gravity and non-associative quantum mechanics is elaborated in detail. We also extend this framework to fully constrained systems, as is required for gravity, and discuss several consequences for quantum gravity.