Department of Physics, Engineering Physics & Astronomy

Queen's University
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Department of Physics, Engineering Physics & Astronomy
Department of Physics, Engineering Physics & Astronomy

The Dog that Didn't Bark: The Cosmological Constant Problem and the Puzzle of Dark Energy

Cliff Burgess
McMaster University and Perimeter Institute

Wed., Feb. 5, 2014
2:30 PM @ Stirling Hall, Lecture D

Abstract:

The ('old') Cosmological Constant Problem, which asks why the vacuum zero-point energy appears not to gravitate, was a theoretical thorn in our collective sides even before the Dark Energy was discovered. This talk reviews why it is regarded to be a problem, and argues that its solution is likely to be the biggest clue we have about the nature of Dark Energy. A set of minimal criteria are formulated against which proposed solutions to the problem can be judged, and most proposals found to fail. Finally I argue why I believe that a solution to the Cosmological Constant Problem exists and is telling us why the LHC should not see superpartners for ordinary particles, even though it also implies that supersymmetry must exist and be important at low energies.