To date, all attempts to develop a quantum theory of gravitation have failed. Some of the leading experts are now contemplating the possibility that their project may not be feasible at all. But to do that, they need to fundamentally rethink their understanding of quantum physics.
At the beginning of the 20th century, two theories emerged that completely turned our worldview upside down: quantum physics, which describes the strange behavior of microscopic particles, and the general theory of relativity, which deals with space-time and the resulting resulting gravity goes. From the smallest to the largest scale, these two ideas revolutionized our understanding of the universe: that objects behave like particles, like waves, and that space and time are not rigid but can change.
However, the two concepts are not compatible with each other. Since their discovery, physicists have been searching for a fundamental theory that will bring the two together. A solution is not yet in sight. But is a merger even necessary? And if so, is a theory of quantum gravity the only way to achieve that? Some scientists – including myself – are now taking a different approach. We try to reconcile both worlds without developing a quantum theory of gravity.
For this we need to rethink the fundamentals of quantum physics…