Niels Bohr Lecture by professor Christof Wetterich

Quantum gravity from the beginning to the present Universe

Talk by: Professor Christof Wetterich,  theoretical physics at Heidelberg University


A realistic evolution of our Universe needs to extend Einstein‘s general relativity by some form of dark energy. Dark energy governs the beginning epoch ( inflationary cosmology) and the present late cosmology.

A scalar field with appropriate properties of its potential can describe both inflation and dynamical dark energy. The metric fluctuations in quantum gravity determine important characteristics of this potential. From pure conceptual thinking quantum gravity turns to observable predictions. The Universe is found to be eternal, beginning in the infinite past with great emptiness.

About the speaker:

Christof Wetterich is professor for theoretical physics at Heidelberg University.

He has worked on cosmology, elementary particle physics, quantum gravity, condensed matter physics and quantum physics. He is most known for the first proposal of dynamical dark energy or quintessence and for his formulation of functional renormalisation which has found applications in many areas, from ultracold atoms to quantum gravity. Christof Wetterich was awarded the Max Planck research prize and the Kastler-Gentner prize. He received an ERC advanced grant and hold the Gutenberg professorship in Mainz.