Science Activist, Jeffrey Epstein, Holds a Conference of Nobel Laureates to Define Gravity

Top physicists including three Nobel Laureates meet to define gravity.

/ Twenty-one renowned physicists, including three Nobel Laureates, recently met on St. Thomas in the US Virgin Islands to determine what the consensus is, if any, for defining gravity.

The conference was financed by science philanthropist Jeffrey Epstein and his foundation, J. Epstein VI Inc. It was organized by Lawrence Krauss, Professor of Physics at Arizona State University. The Nobel Laureates included particle physicists Gerardus 't Hooft, David Gross and Frank Wilczek. Other scientists attending were theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking, Jim Peebles from Princeton University, Alan Guth from MIT, Lisa Randall from Harvard University, Barry Barish from LIGO, the gravitational wave observatory and Maria Spiropulu from CERN in Switzerland.

Understanding gravity is critical now Krauss argues because there's a "lack of understanding of how to accommodate gravity and quantum mechanics." Indeed, conventional notions of gravity require little to no spatial energy for entities to be bound to the other, a sense of anti-gravity or vacuum. But on the quantum level, subatomic particles are bound by the exchange of increasingly intense energy parcels: electrons by the exchange of photons, neutrons and protons (made up of quarks) by the exchange of gluons, and the decay of quarks and leptons by the exchange of vector W and Z bosons.

The outcome of the conference however was promising, Krauss asserts. There was a consensus that gravity might exist in the form of waves and that they could be a part of "what we've been calling empty space."

The notion of gravitational waves is not new. They were predicted by Einstein to exist from the curvature of space time, and although they've never been detected, there's indirect evidence from the study of binary stars, neutron stars and black holes. What bothers Krauss though is that there's still a lack of basic physics to explain them and specifically how they can exist at the quantum level of intense energy.

At the conference, Krauss and others attempted to answer this question. Empty space, they suggested, is neither full nor empty but is rather in a state of flux between intense energy spurts and their cancellation. It is these cancellations that could allow gravity waves to permeate through both intense quantum fields as well as the assumed vacuum of general space.

"We know empty space isn't empty, because it's full of these virtual particles that pop in and out of existence," Krauss points out. "If you try and calculate the energy level in a hydrogen atom and you don't include virtual particles, you get a wrong answer. Every now and then you have an electron positron pair that pops into existence." At the same time, empty space is equally full of the cancellation of energy. Symmetry in nature occurs all the time, Krauss notes.

This view of not quite empty space might very well explain how gravity waves can permeate through all fields. But waves, like ripples, emerging from the displacement of space, have not yet explained why an entity, because of its mass, can draw others to it. What they can do perhaps, is offer clues about the curved gravitational field from which they came.

"Right now we're floundering," Krauss admits. "We're floundering, in a lot of different areas." But from a gravity point of view, that approach might lead to a unified theory.

Media Contact:
Christina Galbraith
The Jeffrey Epstein Foundation
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