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The holographic principle is an intriguing but still-hypothetical paradigm concerning the nature of space, time and the quantum at the most fundamental level. It originates in the enigmatic quantum physics of black holes and efforts to reconcile quantum mechanics with general relativity. The principle posits that quantum spacetime can be understood as the holographic image projected from a quantum hologram (which does not involve gravity) living on the boundary of the spacetime, often at infinity. While this may at first sound impossible, a striking and mathematically precise realization for negatively-curved spacetimes, constructed top-down from string theory, is provided by the so-called Anti-deSitter/Conformal Field Theory (AdS/CFT) correspondence.

This Simons Collaboration seeks to realize the holographic principle in (nearly) flat spacetimes like the one we inhabit. A combination of recent discoveries in disparate fields make this so-far-elusive goal potentially within reach. We use a combined bottom-up and top-down approach and are guided by, but do not assume, results from string theory. This endeavor has come to be known as celestial holography.

Understanding the universal properties of quantum gravity independent of short-distance microphysics.

Using twistor theory and rigorous mathematics to construct exact celestial dual pairs.