School of Mathematics

Royal Society University Research Fellowship awarded to Tim Adamo

Tim Adamo has been awarded a Royal Society University Research Fellowship worth over £600,000. Tim joins the School in October from Imperial College London to start his fellowship entitled 'A New Twist on Quantum Field Theory'. The framework of Quantum Field Theory (QFT) underpins the Standard Model of particle physics, describing how the laws of physics operate at tiny length scales and very high energies, like inside an atom. The Standard Model is the most rigorously tested scientific theory in human history: countless experiments have confirmed its predictions to an extraordinary degree of accuracy, with the recent discovery of the Higgs Boson a famous example. Yet despite its efficacy, there remain many shortcomings in our understanding of QFT which reflect gaps in our knowledge of the fundamental physics shaping our universe. For example, standard formulations of QFT give complicated recipes for computing basic physical quantities, combining hundreds or thousands of contributions to reach a final answer that is often remarkably simple. Over the last decade, observations like this have pointed to a reformulation of QFT with deep connections to other areas of physics and mathematics, manifesting the simplicity we observe in basic quantities of physical interest. The aim of this project is to develop this reformulation by applying it to new settings, such as gravitational waves and expanding universes, while broadening its scope to include a variety of theories which play an important role in our understanding of reality. More fundamentally, this project seeks a re-writing of the foundations for QFT itself. Progress in this direction will have an impact on many different strands of theoretical physics while opening new avenues for exploration in the future.