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Flat Space Holography: Cosmological Entropy, Chiral Gravity and Phase Transitions

Stephane Detournay (Harvard U.)

16.01.2014 at 16:15 

This talk will report on progress in defining a holographic dictionary for gravity theories in flat space. The symmetry algebra of asymptotically flat spacetimes at null infinity consists in the so-called BMS algebra. In 2+1 dimensions, it plays the role of the two dimensional conformal algebra for AdS_3 gravity. Interestingly, the corresponding phase space contains solutions that can be interpreted as cosmological spacetimes. In particular, they possess a nontrivial Bekenstein-Hawking entropy. We show that the latter can be reproduced by an asymptotic counting of states in the putative dual theory, by deriving an analog of the Cardyformula for BMS_3-invariant theories. We then describe a limit in which the symmetry algebra reduces to a chiral copy of a Virasoro algebra, and conjecture that the dual theory can be identied with a chiral CFT. We finally discuss a flat-space analog of the Hawking-Page phase transition.

Arnold Sommerfeld Center
Theresienstrasse 37
Room 348/349