Physicists argue that there may be a reality other than our reality
A curved and stretched graphene sheet lying on another curved sheet
creates a new pattern that affects the movement of electricity through
the sheets. The new model suggests that similar physics could arise
if two adjacent universes could interact. https://bit.ly/3wPZA4W
Physicists sometimes make up crazy stories that sound like science
fiction. Some of them turn out to be true, such as the fact that the
curvature of space and time described by Einstein was finally
confirmed by astronomical measurements. Others remain just
a possibility or a mathematical curiosity.
In a new article in Physical Review Research, Fellow JQI Victor
Galicki and PhD student JQI Alireza Parkhiskar explored the
fantastic possibility that our reality is only half a pair of
Their mathematical model can provide new insight into the basic
features of reality including why our universe is expanding in
this way and how it relates to the shortest lengths allowed by
These topics are crucial to understanding our universe and are part
of one of the greatest mysteries of modern physics.
A pair of scientists stumbled upon this new look by examining
graphene sheets individual atomic layers of carbon in a repeating
They realized that experiments studying the electrical properties
of stacked graphene sheets produced results that resembled small
universes and that the underlying phenomenon could extend to other
areas of physics.
In graphene stacks, new electrical properties emerge from
interactions between individual sheets, so perhaps unique physics
could similarly emerge from interacting layers elsewhere perhaps
in cosmological theories about the entire universe.
The unique electrical properties of graphene, and the possible
connection that our reality may be twinned somewhere, are due to
the special physics created by its formulas called moire formulas.
Moire patterns arise when two repeating patterns from the hexagons
of atoms in the graphene sheets to the meshes of window screens
overlap and one layer twists, shifts, or stretches. The patterns
that arise in this case may repeat themselves over long lengths
compared to the basic patterns.
In graphene stacks, new patterns change the physics going on in the
sheets, in particular the behavior of electrons. In a special case
called magic angle graphene, the moire pattern repeats about 52
times longer than the pattern of individual sheets, and the energy
level that governs the behavior of electrons.
Galicki and Parkhiskar realized that the physics of two graphene
sheets can be thought of as the physics of two two-dimensional
universes in which electrons periodically jump from one universe
This inspired a couple to generalize mathematics to apply it to
universes consisting of any number of dimensions, including our
own four dimensions, and to investigate whether similar moire-pattern
phenomena could emerge in other areas of physics. This initiated
research that brought them face to face with one of the fundamental
problems of cosmology.