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Speakers: Rafael Porto (DESY & ICTP Sao Paulo) and Liam McAllister (Cornell). Location: Amsterdam. This THC meeting is combined with Daniel Baumann’s inaugural lecture for his appointment as full professor, therefore the program is slightly longer than usual and will take place in a different location than the usual Science Park.

Event details of Theoretical cosmology meeting
Date 7 December 2018
Time 12:00 -18:00
Locations Roeterseilandcampus - building E, Aula - Lutherse kerk
Room Lunch and talks, Inaugural lecture Prof Daniel Baumann


12:00-12:45 Arrival with lunch 

12:45 -13:45 Rafael Porto (DESY & ICTP Sao Paulo) - Gravitational Collider Physics: From the LHC to LISA

13:45-14:00 Coffee break 

14:00-15:00 Liam McAllister (Cornell University) - The Kreuzer-Skarke Axiverse

15:15-16:00 Move to lecture hall

16:00-17:00 Inaugural lecture Prof. Daniel Baumann, Aula Oude Lutherse Kerk

17:00 Drinks


Rafael Porto (DESY & ICTP Sao Paulo) Gravitational Collider Physics: From the LHC to LISA

It is indisputable that gravitational wave (GW) science will play a transformative role in astrophysics. It is, however, less clear what impact GW measurements will have to shed light on phenomena beyond our current understanding of gravity and particle physics. In principle, the non-perturbative regime in the dynamics of binary systems may carry the imprint of 'new physics'. However, the need for numerical modeling, together with the small number of cycles involved, may hinder our ability to pinpoint different scenarios if restricted only to the merger phase. In contrast, an accurate analytic reconstruction of the signal during the inspiral offers a unique opportunity to study physics beyond the Standard Model through GW precision data (GWPD). Yet, the associated computational challenges are enormous. While current GW templates for compact binary sources may be sufficient for detection and crude parameter estimation, they are still too coarse for precision physics. We then find ourselves in a situation similar to particle physics in the pre-LHC era: for key processes within empirical reach theoretical uncertainties may dominate. To move forward, and profit the most from GW observations, more accurate waveforms will be needed. The "effective field theory" approach to the binary inspiral problem in general relativity has been instrumental for the construction of the state-of-the-art GW template bank. In this talk I will review how these novel techniques will provide the building blocks that will enable foundational investigations in physics through GWPD: from probes of dynamical spacetime and strongly interacting matter, to the potential to discover exotic compact objects and ultra-light particles in nature. To conclude I will discuss the theoretical challenges ahead, in modeling the binary’s dynamics, to maximize the discovery potential of GW observations in a new era of explorations of the cosmos.

Liam McAllister (Cornell University) - The Kreuzer-Skarke Axiverse

I will describe a large ensemble of compactifications of type IIB string theory on Calabi-Yau threefold hypersurfaces, obtained by triangulating polytopes from the Kreuzer-Skarke list. We have developed methods to compute effective theories in the previously-inaccessible region with many Kahler moduli that plausibly contains almost all vacua in this class.  We find that ultralight axions are ubiquitous when the $\alpha^{\prime}$ expansion is under control. I will explain how these results can be used to advance our understanding of the string landscape and to test ideas about inflation and weak gravity. 


Roeterseilandcampus - building E

Room Lunch and talks

Roetersstraat 11
1018 WB Amsterdam

Aula - Lutherse kerk

Room Inaugural lecture Prof Daniel Baumann

Singel 411
1012 XM Amsterdam


These meetings occur (roughly) every month and are hosted by universities across the Netherlands, gathering the local cosmology community. Some of these talks might be of interest also for string and the Amsterdam GRAPPA groups, so we encourage you to subscribe to the THC mailing list:

and to follow our website to keep up to date on THC meetings dates and programs.

Local organiser 

Jan Pieter van der Schaar (UvA)