John Baez

Lecture in the Program on Classical and Quantum Physics of Strong Gravitational Fields

April 27, 1999

Quantum Geometry and Black Hole Entropy

Starting from a Hamiltonian formulation of general relativity with boundary conditions that describe the horizon of a non-rotating black hole, one can apply techniques from non-perturbative canonical quantum gravity to determine the quantum states of such a black hole. In this approach, the quantum geometry of the region outside the black hole is described using spin networks, while the quantum geometry of the horizon itself is described by a U(1) Chern-Simons theory. Counting the surface degrees of freedom for a horizon of fixed area, one can show that the entropy of a large non-rotating black hole is proportional to its horizon area.

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For more on this subject try these papers:

© 1999 John Baez