Black holes are the ‘thought experiment’ par excellence, where the big three of physics - quantum mechanics, general relativity and thermodynamics - meet and fight it out, dragging in brash newcomers such as information theory and strings for support.
Though a unification of gravity and quantum field theory still evades string theorists, many of the mathematical tools and ideas they have developed find applications elsewhere. In this month’s Perimeter Institute public lecture, Dr Amanda Peet of Toronto University will talk about how they can help tackle black holes.
If you can’t see the video above, or if you want to join the interactive question and answer session, follow this link. After the event the video will be archived here, along with all the previous lectures
(The Perimeter Institute holds eight public lectures a year - I did the April one. On top of jet-lag, my fascinating-but-regrettably-short visit was made all the more disorientating by the fact that the institute (above) looks like a space ship from Interstellar, which I watched on the flight over. Or maybe that’s just me.)
Jon Butterworth has written a book about the Higgs boson discovery, Smashing Physics, available here, and in Canada & the US as “Most Wanted Particle”. Other events where you might be able to hear him talk about it are listed here. Also, Twitter.