Some physicists actually believe that the universe in which we live, may be a giant hologram. Such scientific profession is becoming more and more popular. And the interesting thing is that this idea was not quite reminiscent of modeling such as “the matrix,” but rather leads to the fact that although we think that we live in a three-dimensional universe, it may be only two dimensions. This is called the holographic principle.

The idea is the following: some remote two-dimensional surface holds all the data needed to fully describe our world — and, as in hologram, these data are projected in three dimensions. Like the characters on screen, we live on a flat surface, which only seems to us to be deep.

Sounds absurd. But if physicists conclude that their calculations are correct, all the major problems of physics — like the nature of black holes and the reconciliation of gravity and quantum mechanics — will be much easier to solve. In short, the laws of physics have more meaning when written in two dimensions rather than three.

“Among the majority of physicists this idea is not considered to be insane,” said Leonard Susskind, a Stanford physicist who first formally formed this idea decades ago. She has become a working tool to solve everyday problems of physics.

However, it is worth mentioning an important point. There is no direct evidence that our universe is actually a two-dimensional hologram. These calculations are not one and the same as the mathematical proof. Rather, they are an intriguing hypothesis that our universe may be a hologram. And while not all physicists are confident that we have a good way to test the idea experimentally.


Where did the idea that the universe may be a hologram?

Originally, the idea appeared of a pair of the paradoxes associated with black holes.

1. The paradox of information loss in black hole

In the year 1974 Stephen Hawking discovered that black holes, contrary to established beliefs emit small amounts of radiation over time. Ultimately, when all energy is spilled over the event horizon — the outer edge of the black hole, black hole should completely disappear.

However, this idea has led to the emergence of the problem of loss of information in a black hole. For a long time it was thought that physically destroy information must not: all particles take the original form or, if the changes affect other particles, so the changes, you can restore the initial state particles.

Within the framework of analogy, imagine a stack of documents, which is fed to the shredder. Even if documents will be blown to the smallest particles, the information in them will still exist. It will be broken down into smaller parts, but does not disappear, and for a certain time, the document could be reassembled. So you will be able to know that it was written. In fact, the same can be applied to particles.

But there is a problem: If the black hole disappears, information about each zasosannom object in it, too, seems to have disappeared.

One of the solutions proposed by Susskind and Dutch physicist Gerard t’Hooftom in the mid-90 ‘s, was that when an object is dragged out into a black hole, he leaves behind a kind of two-dimensional fingerprint, encoded in the event horizon. Later, when the radiation coming out of the black hole, it picks up the prints of these data. Thus, the information is not actually destroyed.

Calculations showed that in a two-dimensional surface of a black hole can store enough information to fully describe all possible three-dimensional objects inside.

“The analogy of which we both think independently, it is something like a hologram — a two-dimensional piece of film where you can encode information about the three-dimensional region of space,” said Susskind.

2. the problem of the entropy

It was also the related problem of calculating the amount of entropy in a black hole — that is, the amount of clutter and randomness of its particles. In 70-ies of the Yaakov Bekenštejn calculated that its entropy is limited and its Strip who cional′na the two-dimensional field of event horizon of the black hole.

“For the ordinary matter systems entropy is proportional to the volume, not the square,” said Huang Maldasena, an Argentine physicist who participated in the study of the holographic principle. Eventually he and others came to the conclusion that what looks like a 3D object is a black hole — can be better understood in two dimensions.

As this idea has moved from black holes to the entire universe?
None of this proves that the black hole is a hologram. But almost immediately, said Susskind, physics recognized that consideration of the universe as a two-dimensional object that just seems three-dimensional, can help solve many of the deepest problems in theoretical physics. Mathematics theory works equally well regardless of whether you say about black hole planet or the entire universe.

In 1998 year Maldasena showed that a hypothetical universe may be a hologram. His private hypothetical universe was the so-called anti-de-sitterovskoe (simple words, curved shape over long distances, unlike our flat universe).


Moreover, when looking at the universe in two dimensions, he found a way to bring the incredibly popular idea of string theory is a broad theoretical field where the basic building blocks of our universe is opposed by one-dimensional strings rather than particles.

And more importantly, in the process, he brought two incredibly important and individual concepts of Physics in one theoretical framework. “Holographic principle connected with theories of gravitation theory of particle physics,” says Maldasena.

The combination of these two fundamental ideas in one consistent theory (often called quantum gravity) remains one of the Holy Grails of physics. Of course, it is not telling us that our universe is not hypothetical — is a hologram.

Whether our universe is, in principle, be a hologram — or this idea applies to only hypothetical? It remains a subject of fierce debate.

Lately there have been many theoretical work that led to the idea that the holographic principle can work for our universe — including high-profile Austrian and Indian physicists that came out in may.

As Maldasena, they also sought to apply the principle and find similarities between disparate areas of quantum physics and the theory of gravitation. In our universe, these two theories do not agree: they predict different results with respect to the conduct of any of the individual particles.

But in the new work physics calculated, how these theories can predict the degree of entanglement is a strange quantum phenomena in which the status of two tiny particles can be correlated so that changing one will affect the other particles even at great distance. Scientists have found that treating one particular model of a flat universe as a hologram, they can get the matching results from both theories.

However, although it is a bit closer to the universe, over which he worked Maldasena, scientists worked with only one private type of flat spacetime, and their calculations do not take into account the time is only three spatial dimensions. Moreover, even if it was possible to apply directly to our universe, it would show only that it may be a hologram.

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