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THE GOOGOLPLEXUS*
IGOR ICLEBANOV
Stanford Linear Accelerator Stanford University, Stanford, and

Center 94309
California
LEONARD SUWUND~
Physics Department Stanford University, Stanford, California 94305
ABSTRACT
We carry out third ity. The scale factor quantization in a minisuperspace model of quantum Wormholes gravturn
of the 3geometry
plays the role of time.
the cosmological probability forthe
constant
into a new kind of dynamical constant is typically
variable.
The a priori
cosmological
a smooth distribution.
Invited
talk presented at the Tenth and Final Workshop April 2022, 1989, Chapel Hill, NC. ‘ 89: Superstring TX Workshop,
on Grand Unification, Also invited
talk presented at Strings
March 1318, 1989, College Station,
* Work supported by the Department of Energy, contract DEAC0376SF00515. t Work supported by NSF PHY 812280
1. Introduction
This talk is based on joint work with W. Fischler and J. Po1chinski.l Recent work on quantum gravity 25 h as d emonstrated creation and annihilation of quantum of microscopic fairly convincingly that
baby universes leads to no observable loss fluctuations is to
coherence.6 Instead,
the effect of these topological
turn the coupling parameters relevant to physics in a macroscopic peculiar further kind of dynamical development, variables governed by a probability
universe into a In a
distribution.
Coleman4 found that the probability
to find the cosmologpath The
ical constant
s equal to zero is 1. Coleman’ of gravity
theory relies on the Euclidean
integral quantization unboundedness
which, at present, is only a formal technique.
of the action
(14
makes it difficult particular, to interpret the Euclidean path integral of quantum of the cosmological gravity. In Coleman’ s mechanism for the vanishing with constant arbitrarily to the action
relies heavily
on the apparent
instability
respect to nucleating 2/3X
large numbers of the Euclidean fourspheres each contributing (A = 16G2A/9). U n f or t unately, the same instability or even cosmically
seems to lead to a catastrophic (Res
number of macroscopically
large wormholes in spacetime:
olutions of this problem have been proposed in Ref. 8, but were strongly in Ref. 9.) On the other hand, there are mathematical instabilities. prescriptions
criticized
which eliminate
the
Consider, for example, the path integral over conformally
flat geomeof
tries of spherical topology: wormholeconnected gravity reduces to
gij = d2S;j. This set includes Coleman’ networks s
spherical universes. The Euclidean
path integral for Einstein
/b#dexp(/d4x (&@V)”  A44))
Clearly, this expression is formal due to the unconventional
(l2)
sign of the kinetic term
2
for 4. With the Gibb onsHawkingPerry to be
conformal rotation lo 4 + i4, it is defined
/kGlexp (Id42 (&@W2+W4))
(1.3)
This is just the Euclidean path integral for the stable d4 theory (we assume that the cosmological constant is positive).* Such a procedure may define a consistent 0 which
quantum theory of gravity, but it surely eliminates the divergences as X j drive Coleman’ mechanism. s Other prescriptions proximate

rotate the contour about the Euclidean saddle point or apfourspheres. In this iDm2 in
11
saddle points associated with wormholeconnected
case a careful analysis of the modes of fluctuation front of the BaumColemanHawking each foursphere. thp marvelous amplitude
reveals a prefactor
exp(2/3X) 12J3’ associated with 4
The result is, once again, not favorable: in 4 dimensions (D = 4) b ecomes a disappointing is so illdefined exp(  exp( 2/3X)). Evi
exp(exp(2/3X))
dently, the Euclidean
path integral
that it can be imaginatively
used to produce vastly different answers. For these reasons it seems necessary to provide a different formulation of the theory of topological fluctuations. change in a
In this paper we present a Hilbert minisuperspace model of quantum
space analysis of topology
gravity.
This model is quite simple to work
with, but is rich enough to include any number of universes with spherical spatial geometry. We will find that, under some rather general assumptions, the average
number of large universes is O(exp(2/3X)). lo“‘ ,
In view of the known bound X 5
the average number of universes is 2 101olzo. This is the origin of the We will show that all these universes are cold, empty and
name googolplexust uninteresting.
Their presence, much like the presence of the infrared photons in In fact, in contrast
QED, makes no effect on any of the observable probabilities.
A This t This finite New
is not a conventional theory since it must be regulated in a conformally invariant way. term, coined by L. Susskind, is a fusion of two words. The googolplex is the largest integer with a special name. It is equal to 101oloo. Plexus means a network. (Websters Collegiate Dictionary.) 3
with Coleman’ result, we will find that the a priori probability s constant is a smooth function, or Coleman type. The Coleman double exponential Furthermore, a transition
for the cosmological
with no enhancement of either the BaumHawking
does occur, but in the form exp (,2/3x). of a probability for X but rather i. e.,
it does not have the interpretation amplitude
from the state of the googolplexus to the outvacuum,
it is the amplitude
to create no universes. The exp(2/3X) in electrodynamics
universes are rather like is the
the soft photons emitted
) and the factor exp (e2i3’
analogue of the soft photon factor which suppresses transitions with a finite number of soft photons.

to exclusive states
The
same assumptions
on the state
of the googolplexus
that
produce
O(exp(2/3X))
cold empty universes, typically
lead to no enhancement in the num
ber of warm, liveable universes as X +
0. We will show that there is a class of warm ones. It is not yet
states which contain few cold universes but O(exp(2/3X)) clear whether a theory based on such states is sensible.
2. Third Quantization in Minisuperspace
In this section we consider the path integral in a minisuperspace model of quantum gravity. This model includes the spatially spherical geometries with metric
ds2 = g(dT2
+ a2(T)df$)
(24
where da: spatially
is the metric matter
of a unit
threesphere.
We also include a number of action with matter
constant
fields &(r).
The E ins t einHilbert
couplings reduces to T ait2 + a + a3
0
(2.2)
4
where X = 16G2A/9.
Th is action defines a hamiltonian 9
H = i which is the generator
{
f
 a + a3(X + V(q$;)) + am3rf in the parameter must annihilate
1
P3)
of translations
time 7. Due to general the physical states. This of the universe @(a, 4;)
covariance of the theory, the hamiltonian defines the WheelerDe d aP$da Witt
equation for the wave function
I
82 d _ .2 j@  a2 + a4(X + V(h)) Lhx 8
@(a, q$) = 0 1
(2.4)
where the uncertainty in the hamiltonian Schroedinger tion.
15
in p is a part of the operator ordering ambiguities of Eq. (2.3). Sometimes Eq.
inherent
(2.4) is regarded as gravity’ s KleinGordon equa
equation,
but it is obviously beginning
more like gravity’ s
Indeed many authors,
with De Wittt4
have noted the similarity is predefinite
between the scale factor a and time. In l+l cise. As in the case of the KleinGordon
dimensions the correspondence equation, the lack of a positive
probability
density makes the oneuniverse theory hard to interpret.
In any case, in prochanges.
we are not after formulating
such a theory here. Instead, we are interested connected components of geometry
cesses where the number of spatially A convenient formalism
involves a Hilbert quantization”
space for universes. With Witt
this in mind,
1621
we will carry out “third
of the WheelerDe
equation,
which We will with con
is a step analogous to second quantization therefore a playing consider a quantum
of the KleinGordon
equation. Witt First
field theory of the WheelerDe field.
equation we will
the role of time and @ being the quantum topology
sider a theory without wormholes.
changing processes. Subsequently,
we will include
One of the goals is to build a theory whose Feynman diagrams resemwormholeconnected interpretation bubbles. We will find that this theory has a from the interpretation
ble Coleman’ s natural
probability
which is quite different although
suggested by Coleman. similar to Coleman’ s,
Surprisingly,
this theory has a graph structure we measure.
the graphs do not compute the probabilities 5
To simplify
the discussion, we will first ignore the scalar fields 4; and return to
consider their effects in Section 4. Also, we will adopt the operator ordering in the WheelerDe think Witt Eq. (2.4) w h ic h corresponds to p = 2. of the WheelerDe Witt Then it is convenient to wave function:
of u3 = V as the argument
(
Although our results of this prescription for large V. is that If we think
d2  & W2
the potential
+; >
qv>
= 0
P5)
will not depend much on the choice of p, the advantage on the left side approaches as a real coordinate, oscillator a constant then Eq.
of V as time and Q(V)
(2.5) is just th e c 1assical equation for a harmonic which varies with becomes an ordinary eqlained time. In fact, the oscillator
with a spring constant
is upside down for V < X3i2 but as V + co. As KleinGordon Witt
harmonic oscillator
with frequency wg = d/3
above, it is natural to think of Q(V) as a O+l dimensional terms, third quantization to solution of the minisuperspace harmonic
field. In practical equation amounts
WheelerDe oscillator
of the timedependent
problem
defined by Eq. (2.5). T o make this analogy yet more explicit, and replace Q(V) with X(t). The thirdquantized lagrangian
we change notation is
L = ; A2  ; w2(t)X2
 Jxqt)
(2.6)
For reasons that will be explained
t = 0. The timeevolution
later, we have included
a Sfunction
source at
is generated by the hamiltonian
H = ; P2 + ; w2(t)X2
+ JXS(t)
P7)
variable: it creates or an
We emphasize that X(t) nihilates spacethe
is not an ordinary
oscillator
entire universes with spatial volume t. t plays the role of time in a new googolplexus where particles 6 are universes. In order to introduce
universe creation and annihilation
operators,
we expand
X(t) = f(t)a + f*(t)u+
where f and f* are the incoming equation. The conjugate and outgoing is solutions of the WheelerDe
(2.8)
Witt
momentum
P(t) = f(t)u + f*(t)u+
From the canonical skian ff* This fixes the normalization f(t of f: f m) = (2wo)u”e“w+“)  f*f = i commutation relations
(2.9)
it follows that [a, CL+] 1 if the Wron=
(2.10)
(2.11)
We will also fix the phase 6 by requiring
that
h(O) = 0
where f(t) = fl(t) + ifz(t). A nice property of the hamiltonian
(2.12)
in Eq. (2.7) is that
it loses its explicit
time dependence as t + 00: (2.13)
H(t 
co) = ; wo{u, u+}
The ground state at late times is simply the oscillator
vacuum (2.14)
a 1 out >= 0
The quanta annihilate
of the theory
can now be cleanly
identified:
ut and a create and
the outuniverses. 7
The key question is what determines of the googolplexus . The minisuperspace negative time is physically
Q(X, t), the Schroedinger formulation has a peculiar
wave function feature that
meaningless (t refers to the volume of Sspace). Therenear t = 0 by a smooth match
fore, it is sensible to assume that \l is determined on to short distance physics. insensitive
Since the Planck scale physics is almost completely implies that the boundary condition
to the value of X, this assumption
at t = 0 has no strong dependence on X. We will consider a few such choices of the state of the googolplexus. motivated by the assumption One of them, which we denote by 1 i >, will be of symmetry under t + t. This suggests that
i(t
= O)l i >= qt
= O)l i >= 0
(2.15)
or, in other words, Q[r;(X,O) = const A general wave function of width consistent with our assumption is initially (2.16) a wave packet we will work
w, which has no singular dependence on X. For illustration,
with Gaussians K&,(X, t = 0) = (g4exP We will see that some of our results are insensitive boundary conditions imposed
(5)
I
(2.17)
to the precise nature of the conditions our
at small t, as long as these boundary
have no finetuned theory with
dependence on X. However, for the purposes of comparing it will
Coleman’ s,
be necessary to fine tune the physics near t = 0. of this finetuning in terms of imposing “generic” of this
Alternatively, boundary
one can think
conditions
at large t. We will discuss the possible implications procedure in Section 4.
rather counterintuitive
In order to carry out comparison the dependence of the path integral
with Coleman’ results, we need to calculate s on J and X for an arbitrary
8
state of the
googolplexus
1 in >. If we set J = 0, then the path integral over all X(t) amplitude between the instate and the outvacuum
for t > 0
is just the transition
J
This path integral which represents torus. sical grounds Coleman dependence on l/X. topology. 
[DX(t)]2
Lw L(J=o)dt =< out 1 in >
(2.18)
of the vacuum graph of a
can be thought
of as the exponential geometries
a sum over minisuperspace
with
the topology
There are no toroidal
solutions of Rij = 8nGAgij.
Therefore,
on semiclas
did not expect the sum over tori to have an exponential
In Coleman’ approach, the crucial geometries have spherical s spheres into our model, it is necessary to turn the path integral
In order to introduce Treating
on the source J. is exactly
the source term as a perturbation,
given by the sum of graphs shown in Fig.
1. Each line represents a
a
n.+
J J
n v
 n+
J
... w z
6335Al
tb) A499
Figure 1. a) The sum of Feynman diagrams representing the exponential of Eq. (22). The vertical axis is the scale factor a, the horizontal is parameter time r. Each line represents G(O,O), the sum over all paths from a = 0 back to a = 0. b) G(O,O) is a sum over minisuperspace geometries with the topology of a sphere.
universe which is created by the source with zero radius, propagates, to zero size and is annihilated
shrinks back
by the source. In other words, each line stands for In analogy with Coleman’ sum over s
a sum over geometries of spherical topology.
9
Euclidean bubbles, the sum of graphs in Fig. 1 exponentiates. that 2 = J where
(,(tl , t2) = < Out
To see this, we note
[Dx(t)]e”&m
L(J)dt = et J2GW) < out
in >
(2.19)
1T(X(t1)X(t2))1
in
’
< out I in >
(2.20)
If we specialize to I in >= ) i >, then
G(tl < ta) = ?fi(tl>

f(h)
(2.21)
As expected, G(tl, t2) is an outgoing wave as a function and also satisfies &G(tl = 0, t2) = 0
of the bigger argument t2
(2.22) associated with each line
Let us examine in more detail the factor 3 J2G(0,0) in Fig. 1. Naively
it appears that for agreement with Coleman’ analysis G(O,O) s It is easy to see that this is not generally the case in
must be our model.
exp(2/3X). First,
the real part of f(t)
satisfies jr(O)
= 0. Since the boundary
condition is specified at t = 0, the generic behavior of fr is to increase exponentially with
t until
it enters the oscillatory
region t > .Xm3i2, where it must oscillate techniques indicate that
fz(t),
with the amplitude fl(0)  exp(1/3X).
fixed by Eq. (2.11). Standard WKB On th e contrary, the imaginary in the oscillatory
part off,
which is out
of phase with fl(t) the WKB
region, exponentially As a result,
grows toward t = 0. In
approximation,
f2(0) N exp(l/3X).
G(O,O) N A + iB
(2.23)
where A is O(exp(2/3X))
and B is O(1).
It seems that there is an immediate
disagreement with Coleman’ analysis. However, as explained in Ref. 22, there is s
10
no disagreement.
In the firstquantized
theory, specified by Eq. (2.2)) G(O,O) is
the path integral over all trajectories
o(r) with a(O) = a(T) = 0 integrated over 7’ . by sending r + ir, then the resulting
If one performs the Euclidean continuation Euclidean action
T
+a Xu3) JdT(ck2
0
(2.24) how
is not bounded from below. Within would one “approximate”
this illdefined Euclidean path integration,
G(0, O)? In the spirit of Coleman’ theory, we need to s paths, including those with multiple bounces
sum over all the Euclidean stationary
off the point a = 0. (The bounces occur because the problem is defined on the halfline a > 0.) Therefore, we include all the trajectories

of the form (2.25) these are simply linear
u(7) = $1 with duration T = nr/fi (see Fig. 2).
sin(fir)I Geometrically,
A
a 0 409 6335A2 + + +*a* z )
Figure 2. The euclidean trajectories of the form a(~) = Isin(&r)l/fi, with 0 < 7 < na/fi, that need to be included in the semiclassical approximation for G(0, 0). The reflections off the point a = 0 are the minisuperspace wormholes that attach to the north and south poles of the large fourspheres.
chains of n fourspheres glued at their poles. Il.= 2/3X. Th e saddle point “approximation”
+ pe4/3x + p2e6’ 3A + . . . =
The action of each foursphere is to G(O,O) is then
,2/3x M 1. + ace2/3A
W,
0)
M e2/3x
1  pe2f3X
p
)
P26)
11
where we have, of course, used an analytically
continued definition
of the geometric
sum. The relative factor of p in the subsequent bounces depends on the boundary conditions at a = 0. Semiclassically, action which typically p N eVsw where S, is the Euclidean wormhole
has only weak dependence on A. The agreement between Eq.
(2.26) and Eq. (2.23) is quite detailed. The formal sum over bounces of Eq. (2.26) is capable of reproducing in Eq. (2.23). even the exponentially suppressed term O(exp(2/3X))
I nc 1usion of the multiple
bounces is therefore crucial to obtaining G(0, t) from the Euclidean saddle the minisuperspace model
the correct normalization point analysis.
of the Green function
It comes as a bit of a surprise that
contains a certain subset of wormhole configurations the asymmetry

in Coleman’ sense. Due to s included the wormholes that Thus, each line
of the model, we have inadvertently
can couple to the north and the south poles of the fourspheres. in Fig.
1 generally corresponds not just to one foursphere but to a geometric
Is there a way to turn off these wormholes them off by
sum over linear chains of fourspheres. biilt into a generic minisuperspace
model ? If we succeed in turning in Fig.
effectively
setting p = 0 in Eq. (2.26)) th en each propagator
1 would be
associated with just one foursphere and would carry a factor e2/3X . The answer to the above question is positive. can be turned off by a careful tuning The minisuperspace wormholes or the spring then
of either the boundary
conditions
spring constant w2(t) near t = O.* For instance, if we make the oscillator in this region sufficiently attractive.(say, by adding to w2(t) a term N b(t)),
we can fine tune fr (t) t o b ecome exponentially ously maintain the boundary condition
decreasing with t and simultaneon w2 (t)
(2.12). The precise requirement
is that the WheelerDe Witt provided the wave function there exists a metastable
equation have a zeroenergy bound state when X = 0, satisfies boundary condition O(exp(2/3X)). (2.12). Then, for small X Since fl(t) is normalcase,
state with lifetime
ized to oscillate with amplitude jr(O) N exp(l/SX). Substituting
I2 (2~0)~ ‘ at large t then, in the finetuned
this into Eq. (2.21), we find G(O,O) N exp(2/3X).
* The precise form of the WheelerDe Witt equation is uncertain in this region due to the lack of knowledge of shortdistance behavior of quantum gravity. 12
If we compare
this result
with
Eq.
(2.26), we find agreement
provided
we set
~1= exp(SW)  exp(2/3X).
Somehow we have succeeded in making the minisuw2(t) in the unknown model which is prob
perspace wormholes very costly. At the expense of finetuning microscopic region near t = 0, we have constructed
a minisuperspace
is free of wormholes
defined in Coleman’ sense. This special adjustment s of physical parameters but a procedure model.
ably not a true finetuning remove the asymmetry adjustment Euclidean wormholes built
necessary to Without this
into a generic minisuperspace
the model would have picked two special points geometry that (the two poles of the foursphere), to these special points.
on each stationary
and would have contained Now that these asymmetrithat
can attach
cally coupled wormholes
have been removed, we can add by hand wormholes
can create contacts between arbitrary ColemanP
pairs of points, such as those considered by
This will be done in Section 3. different, contained perhaps simpler prescription in the minisuperspace for turning For that case and of the
_ We now offer a somewhat off the asymmetric wormholes
models.
purpose, we need to elucidate the crucial difference between the finetuned
the general case. Let us solve for the shape of the Schroedinger wave function outvacuum backwards Qout(X, t) at early times. in time, we obtain By integrating the Schroedinger
equation
(2.27)
where ..m Q!(t) = “f*(q Without finetuning, Re{cu(O)} is O(exp(2/3X)) function while Im{cw(O)} is O(1). (2.28) This
means that Q?\IloUt(X, is an oscillating 0) cial property oscillations of the finetuned are eliminated.
with a broad envelope. is O(exp(2/3X))
The speand the
case is that Im{cr(O)}
In fact, in the limit
X + 0, QIl,,t(X, 0) becomes flat and speaking, we are only interested
therefore indistinguishable
from Q;(X) 0). Strictly
13
in this limiting finitely
situation:
only in the limit
X +
0, where fourspheres
are in
large, can we make a clean separation between two bubbles connected by a and one deformed bubble. Working condition with very small A, we will therefore condition
wormhole,
replace the boundary
of Eq. (2.16) with the boundary
%&(X,0) = %d(X, 0)
which is exponentially holes can be fulfilled close to it. Thus, the requirement by choosing the wave function
(2.29)
of the absence of wormat t = 0 of de
of the googolplexus
which evolves into the ground state at late times, and leads to no production Sitter universes.

In the Heisenberg picture, 1 in >=
this choice is simply I out >
(2.30)
This leads to
G(W) = f(O)f*(O) exd2/3$
in agreement with the claim that the asymmetric wormholes
(2.31) have been turned off.
Perhaps, it is no coincidence that, in the absence of a source of small geometries, a suppression of the number of large universes amounts to a suppression of wormholes. The process of production wormhole geometry of a pair of large universes can be pictured as a
where the radius of the universe first contracts
to a Planckian
value and then reexpands. Let us now compare the sum of disconnected diagrams of Fig. 1 with Coleman’ s sum over disconnected find the path integral fourspheres. to be
z( J, A) = ef J2f(o).f*(o)
Substituting
Eq. (2.31) into Eq. (2.19)) we
(2.32)
where f(O)f*(O)
 exp(2/3X).
Th us, we have reproduced
Coleman’ s
double expoto
nential with one important
change: each bubble carries a minus sign in addition
14
the large factor exp(2/3X).
In th e 1imit X + 0 this leads to an enormous suppresThe origin of this suppression
sion of the path integral instead of enhancement.
lies in the fact that the average number N of outgoing universes produced by the action of the current J diverges in the limit X + 0:
N =< out IeiJx(o)utueiJx(o)l
out >= J2 f(O)f*(O)
(2.33)
It is also easy to see that the de Sitter universes produced by the current are Poisson distributed. The path integral 2 with no insertions measures the amplitude implies to
produce no universes in the final state. The Poisson distribution

1212 eeN =
inagreement with Eqs. (2.32) and (2.33). Th e entire situation
(2.34)
is similar to QED
with a time dependent external current, which is well known to produce a divergent number of soft photons. The exponential factor in the amplitude (2.32) to
produce no outgoing universes is analogous to the infinite suppression of exclusive amplitudes, in which no infrared probability photons are emitted. interpretation: The analogy with QED
suggests the following
since we cannot detect the other which are in no way sen
universes, we are interested sitive to the infrared probability
in inclusive probabilities,
divergences.
We will postpone a detailed discussion of the
interpretation
until Section 4.
3. Topology Change In Minisuperspace.
In order to complete our construction, cesses in our thirdquantized the disconnected Following model. we now include topology changing prosome of
This will have the effect of turning
diagrams of Fig.
1 into diagrams connected by wormhole lines. into the action a
the method of Refs. 2, 3, 4, 18, 22, 23, we introduce
15
variable cy, which is essentially
the field for universes of Planckian
size:
S=;a2+jdt{;k2+;
0
(&y)X2JXb(t)}
.
(3.1)
The role of (Y is to create contact between arbitrary scopic universes. teraction universe. construct vertex, Th is is accomplished which through
pairs of points on the macroof the in
a repeated application
describes creation
of a baby universe by a macroscopic is nonlocal. In order to
Since the scale factor is time, this interaction a hamiltonian treatment,
we will make the action local in time by forof t, and by introducing a lagrange multiplier
mally promoting

(Y into a function
P(t):
,,y= ;a’ +?dt{;22+;
0
(&
‘ +;+))X’ 
JXG(t)+@(t)h(t)}
(3.2)
The argument in the first term is arbitrary since there is a constraint Therefore, initial & = 0. The fields (Y and ,B are a pair of conjugate can be taken to be functions *in(X) cy, variables. the wave functions of the form space a
of X and Q, with
conditions
t=
0). Since ir = 0 is obeyed as an operator equation, the Hilbert of time.
breaks up into sectors labeled by cr which is independent general state of the googolplexus definite values of AZ
Specifically,
can be expanded in a complete set of states with
19 >=
y2F~(a)p;Cy >. (3.3) Jdc&‘ >Ia!
corresponding to 19; a > evolves in time according constant X,ff = X + go. F*(a) in function condition for different osectors, which is completely to assume that at t = 0. Thus, it is natural
16
The Schroedinger wave function to the hamiltonian Eq.
with a shifted cosmological
(3.3) is the weighting by the boundary
determined
FQ is a smooth function.
In general, the outstate
is
lout >=
J
daFo,t(c+ut;~
> IQ >
(3.4)
is assumed to from the amplitude
where lout; (x > is the outvacuum be smooth. instate Then the path integral, is given by
in each osector
and F,,t(a)
which is the transition
to the outstate,
J
is to be computed
daefr i”2F,f,t(a)F;,(cy)Z(X
+ ga).
(3.5)
2(X + ga) =< out; alin; a > in a theory with a shifted cosmological summation constant
(3.6) X + go. This
expression closely resembles the wormhole Coleman claimed: Z(X) N exp(exp(2/3X)),
formula
of Refs. 24. If, as by
then the path integral is dominated constant
the value of o such that the observed cosmological after setting in>=e we have found Coleman’ result! s is strongly Z(X) N exp(=w)I
is zero. Recall that,
out > *
P7) sign from constant
exp(2/3X)),
which differs by a crucial
It could then appear that the zero of the cosmological Before we jump to such a drastic conclusion,
suppressed.
however, we the issue
need to analyze perhaps the most confusing issue of quantum of probability interpretation interpretation.
gravity:
As we will argue in the next section, the probability quantization is quite different from the lore
suggested by the third quantum gravity.
of the Euclidean
*
There is no discrepancy with Eq. (2.30). We have simply absorbed the effects of the source at early times into the definition of the instate. t In 4 dimensions our sign agrees with the sign found by Polchinski (Ref. 11). 17
4. The Probability
Interpretation.
the magical effect of
As shown by Coleman2’ and Giddings and Stromingera 4 the wormhole sum is to introduce integral. Coleman went further probability integration
over coupling constants into the path the weight in the integration as
and interpreted
the a priori
distribution
for the coupling
constantsP This formed the
basis for his claim that the observed cosmological constant is zero in the wormhole theory. Implicit in these arguments is the assumption, path integral with insertions first advocated by Hawking, values in
that the Euclidean quantum gravity.
computes expectation
We will see, however, that this assumption
does not generally
hold in the theory of the googolplexus. Our methods quantized hamiltonian rely on thinking of the scale factor by Eq. as the time in the third(2.7), the thirdquantized
dynamics. has explicit
Then, as demonstrated
time dependence. In such a theory, the path integral with matrix element of the from
operator insertion
0; is a transition
<
Out
1Oij
in >
(4.1)
On the other hand, the expectation is given by
value of Oi in a state of the googolplexus
1 in >
< in IOil in > which cannot in general be calculated stance, the probability
co PUeff) = 9 J
KJ
P2) path integrals. For in
using conventional
distribution
for the cosmological
constant is given by
Lx
x =glP,, (4*3) 9i, XT  x ,t=O)/1 (AefiA”)I’ eff 9 I (
is a smooth function. The infrared factor 2(X,,,) which
which, strongly
by assumption,
depends on the cosmological
constant does not appear in Eq. (4.3). The
18
wormhole
calculus, which is intimately
connected with the thirdquantized of a priori probabilities.
Feynthe
man rules, is not suited for the calculation calculation of a priori probabilities in QED.
Instead,
bears a close analogy to the calculation definition
of inappears large
clusive crosssections to be related infrared priori
On the other hand, Coleman’ s which are wellknown of p(X,,,)
to exclusive
crosssections,
to contain
suppression factors. probability
In fact, the properties constant,
in Eq. (4.3), the a on the unknown which
for the cosmological gravity
depend entirely
mechanisms
of quantum
at Planck scale. Coleman’ s
precognition,
provides the connection our model. Equations
between the Planckian
and cosmic physics, is absent from
(4.1) and (4.2) show that the path integral computes the expectation I out >. This corresponds to setting
values only if I in >=
J = 0in Eq.
(3.7).
However, as explained above, this state of the googolplexus leads to no sharp peaks inthe probability distribution, just like almost any other state. There,
Where does the example of the previous section fit in this discussion? in order to introduce with the state of Eq. a diagrammatic (3.7). structure into the path integral by Eq. X + (2.33),
we worked
As evidenced universes with
this state contains
a large number subscript produce
of de Sitter
0 (from which
here on we drop the is the amplitude to
on X,ff). no outgoing
As a result, quanta,
the path integral, suppressed.
is strongly
On the other hand, the a
priori probability obtained
distribution
for the cosmological constant in such a googolplexus,
by substituting
Eq. (3.7) into Eq. (4.3), displays no sharp suppression
or enhancement
of any value. constants we measure are actually distributed according to
If the coupling the a priori
probabilities
defined by Eq.
(4.2), then our conclusions
can not be
more disappointing. seem to turn
From the point of view of a lowenergy parameters into random
observer, wormholes variables. However, Probability Our definition
all the fundamental
we should not be hasty to accept this unpleasant interpretation
state of affairs.
is one of the most confusing issues in quantum gravity.
19
of a priori
probabilities
is perfectly
reasonable from the point of view of an outside But how
observer who can watch entire universes being created and destroyed.
does the world appear to US, the observers confined to one universe? An analogous hypothetical participating question concerns the meaning of probabilities in a scattering process. Within observed by an electron framework such
a secondquantized
a question is confusing and may not have a unique answer. One interesting modification of the definition of probabilities was proposed in weighted and
Ref. 19. There it was suggested that we observe the a priori probabilities
by the number of created de Sitter universes. This number is infraredsensitive seems to offer a new possibility for solution of the cosmological
constant problem.
To show this we come back to the example considered in Section 2. If the instate is taken to be of the form (3.7), then th e source at late times. According
Jproduces
a large number of quanta as X + 0. If values of the
to Eq. (2.33), this number is 0(exp(2/3X)) of probabilities for different
this number is included in the weighting cosmological constant,
then we find a single exponential
peak at X = 0+, similar occurs for a
to the peak of the BaumHawking broad class of the wave functions boundary conditions
approach.12’ This peak actually 13 of the googolplexus,
provided that some “generic”
are specified at early times. The reason is quite simple. Before is upsidedown, and the wave packet spreads. As
t = Xm3i2 the h armonic oscillator
a result, at late times the wave function a large number of quanta, which rapidly consider the gaussian boundary conditions
is in a highly excited state and contains grows with a decreasing X. For instance, of Eq. (2.17). Calculating w, we find* the number
of quanta at late times as a function
of the width
N(w)
=<
w
I,+
al
w
>=
&l.f(W
+ ,IfP)l”
W2
 f
(44
We see that, first pointed
*
without
any fine tuning
near t = 0, N(w)
N exp(2/3X).
(This was to
out by Rubakov.lg)
The crucial question is whether
it is justified
From here on we set J = 0. Turning on the source does not modify any of the conclusions.
20
identify
the number of produced de Sitter universes with the probability
to find a
given value of A? We believe that the answer is negative. point of view, it is necessary to add some matter The simplest periodic
In order to explain our
content to our model.
model which contains some of the crucial features includes one
scalar field 4, which is an angle ranging from 0 to 27r. If the field has then the problem splits into sectors labeled by the discrete values of conjugate to 4. The thirdquantized WheelerDe Witt field can be
no potential, the momentum expanded as
X(t,
where fk is an incoming
4) =
2 (P kccl
f#ak
+ Cik’ f,*(+t,)
(4.5)
solution of
d2 k2 gT+i$For a value of [El << A, Robert son Walker a maximum (FRW) e
&
+ p
>
.w>
= 0
(4.6)
a Friedmannexpands to
this equation has two classical solutions: universe, which starts from a singularity, to a singularity;
volume
lkj3i2,
and recontracts
and a de Sitter the a
universe of minimum
volume x Xm3j2. For lkl > &
the barrier separating
FRW and de Sitter regions disappears, universe expanding forever.
and there is only one classical solution:
We will assume that, in this toy model, a universe similar to ours is described by a FRW solution with 1 << lkl << & (4.7)
In other words, we assume that our universe has a small positive spatial curvature which will eventually force it to recontract. We will further suppose that the
probabilities contained wrong
we observe must be weighted by the average number of the universes in the googolplexus, which resemble our universe. universes which contain
21
Then it is clearly no heat. (The
to count the de Sitter
virtually
energy of the scalar field is negligible condition (4.7) is satisfied.)
in the de Sitter region t > X3/2 provided
Our goal, instead, will be to count the FRW universes with a given large value of k when the cosmological discussion of boundary constant is so small that the condition (4.7) holds. The
conditions
for a given value of k only concerns the oscillators mechanical system of Section 2. As we have imposed at t = 0 leads to production of
ak and ai and reduces to the quantum found, a generic boundary condition
O(exp(2/3X))
d e S’ er universes. However, as we argued, this number should not 1 tt of the probabilities measured by us. In order to count operators through
be included in the definition
the FRW universes, we introduce
their creation and annihilation
X(t,
4) =
g (eikd hk(t)bk + emit4 h;(t)bL) kcm
(4.8)
where hk(t) + Generic boundary number conditions &%exp(iklogt), t+0 (4.9)
at t = 0 do not lead to a sharp dependence of the evolution at early times to imeffects
of FRW universes on X, since the Schroedinger
is very weakly sensitive to X. As explained pose boundary of quantum semiclassical conditions
in Section 2, it seems natural the shortdistance
at t = 0 in order to mimic such boundary
gravity.
Unfortunately,
conditions
do not lead to a
solution of the cosmological results follow
constant problem. if, as in the example of Section 2, we (4.7)
Much more interesting impose boundary conditions
at late times, such as in Eq. (2.30). If condition
holds, then there is a thick barrier separating
the de Sitter region from the FRW which tends to the N exp(2/3X) The same
region. As shown in Eqs. (2.27) and (2.28), th e wave function
ground state gaussian at late times must be a wave packet of width at early times. Such a state contains O(exp(2/3X)) FRW universes!
conclusion follows if the wave function
at late times is not in the ground state, but
22
in any finitely specified
excited
state.
Thus, if we work with generic boundary
conditions
at late times, we find that the number of FRW universes which reach maximum volume V,,, is O(exp(2/3X)) as X + 0. This sharp
some specified
peak is relevant if we weigh the probability are similar cosmological to ours. constant Such a theory problem.
for X by the number of universes which for solution of the
may offer new prospects
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25
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