Skip to main content

Questions and Answers

If you have any questions about the gravitational theory of quantum mechanics, then you can email meand I'll do my best to respond. Here are answers to a few common questions that help to understand the implications of the theory.

Q: Is this just another interpretation of Quantum theory?
A: No it is a new theory with its own predictions (for example no graviton). It offers to explain quantum theory in terms of an accepted existing theory.
Q: Surely time reversal and closed timelike curves are just too ridiculous to consider as explanations of quantum theory?
A: Quantum theory is so weird that any explanation will have to involve a dramatic change to our ideas of causality. Both experimentally and theoretically it is known that quantum theory cannot be explained like any other classical theory (it is incompatible with any local hidden variable theory). It is worth noting that quantum gravity (a mainstream approach to unification of GR and Quantum Theory) also has a weird causal structure at short distance - they expect time to emerge as a large scale phenomenon and not to have any meaning at plank length scales.
Q: Do we need an explanation of quantum theory?
A: Good question, some aspects of Nature just have to be accepted and understood without having an underlying explanation. Special Relativity is a good example. We do not need an explanation of why the speed of light cannot be exceeded, that is how Nature is. Ordinary everyday life tricks us into thinking that time is absolute and speed has no limit, but that is just a low energy approximation. It is possible that Nature is intrinsically random and quantum theory has no deeper explanation. But that also means that probability has a vary different meaning as well.
Q: Does your theory give a value for Plank's constant?
A: Not such a good question: Plank's constant has dimensions (ML2T-1)so it can have any value at all depending upon the units. Ballentine shows neatly how a constant appears in the equations of motion. What can be said is that the constant cannot be zero for any non-trivial equations of motion. Where Plank's constant appears by itself in the equations (without an arbitrary mass parameter) is in the intrinsic angular momentum. The units of Plank's constant are the same as angular momentum. So what I can say is that Plank's constant has the value of the intrinsic angular momentum of a particle that transforms like a vector.
Q: Exactly how do you get the results of a quantum experiment from General Relativity?
A: I don't know
Q: So how is it an explanation of quantum theory?
A: Well, you need to appreciate that quantum theory only gives the probability of the result of a measurement. So to reproduce quantum theory you need to predict the same probabilities - I do. Consider the throw of a dice predicting the probability correctly is trivial compared with predicting exactly what trajectory the dice takes and which way it actually lands. The probabilities can be predicted from simple symmetry and structural arguments. with a different structure you get the probabilities of quantum theory.