We develop a systematic framework for describing binary dynamics using modern tools from quantum field theory. Our approach combines onshell methods such as generalized unitarity and the double-copy construction with effective field theory methods for integration and matching. As a first application, we derive a new result in general relativity: the third post-Minkowskian correction to the conservative two-body Hamiltonian for spinless black holes. Prospects and challenges for applying quantum field theory for the gravitational wave physics program are discussed.

]]>In this talk we discuss the problem of coupling quantum field theories to topological line defects and explain that it is governed by a central mathematical notion called Koszul duality for associative algebras. We then propose an analogous physical definition of Koszul duality for chiral algebras. We will explain that in the context of (a twisted version of) AdS(3)/CFT(2), in which a chiral algebra naturally arises in the CFT(2), a deformation of this version of Koszul duality can be used to compute algebra OPEs. This talk is based on work in collaboration with K. Costello.

]]>In flat spacetime, a number of “special” scalar field theories have been identified which possess shift symmetries, non-renormalization theorems and enhanced soft limits. In this talk I’ll present the de Sitter analogues of these theories and I’ll discuss their curious properties. I’ll discuss their relationship to other exotic irreducible representations of de Sitter: partially massless particles.

]]>There should be other ways to get readers engaged with science besides just putting words on a page, representing the voice of the author. What if the reader could get multiple voices, and different points of view? What if they could see and relate to a variety of people engaged with the ideas? Maybe see glimpses of the language and tools that the scientists actually use when they develop scientific ideas and discover truths about our universe? What if these things could all take place on the page at the same time? Is there a kind of book that can do all that?

Yes! Graphic novels, sequential art, comics - whatever term you prefer to use - are a unique narrative form that can communicate serious, multifaceted scientific ideas to sophisticated readers. In fact, they are perfectly suited to physics! Johnson demonstrates this in his book “The Dialogues: Conversations about the nature of the Universe” (MIT Press), listed by Science Friday as one of the year’s best books in 2017 and in 2018. In this talk he discusses some of the scientific and artistic ideas contained in it, and how he came to write and draw the book.