Welcome to the Center for Fundamental Theory

The Center for Fundamental Theory (CFT) brings together a variety of perspectives to promote and communicate a better understanding of the universe, particularly its fundamental constituents and evolution. Specific questions include the nature of black holes, dark matter, and dark energy, as well as the role and potential form of quantum effects in these phenomena. Inquiries into these broad questions benefit from a deeper understanding of the philosophical and mathematical structure of physical theories.

Since these and related questions have remained open for some time, answering them may require new, fundamental theories that supersede the current framework of general relativity, quantum mechanics, and quantum field theory as we know them today. The Center for Fundamental Theory is unique in the variety of perspectives it brings together.

A primary focus of the CFT is the formulation of concrete descriptions of quantum gravity. Another is on the mathematical and structural forms of predictions made by quantum field theory, and the tools used to make such predictions in general. Related to these is an understanding of quantum systems and quantum information in non-trivial spacetimes. These studies often involve novel computational and mathematical challenges. Due to the universality of mathematical formulations, solutions can sometimes prove useful in other areas of physics and science.

Guiding and testing new fundamental theories requires data—both observational and theoretical. An example of the former is the information pouring in from neutrino and gravitational wave observatories and modern telescopes. Theoretical data includes detailed thought experiments and cutting-edge computations for real or imaginary phenomena. Members of the Center help push this data and use it to inform the pursuit of many fundamental questions.