Two-dimensional quantum cosmology

Adrian Cooper*, Leonard Susskind, Lárus Thorlacius

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Citations (Scopus)


Two-dimensional quantum gravity coupled to conformally invariant matter with central charge c > 25 has been proposed as a toy model for quantum gravity in higher dimensions. The associated "Wheeler-DeWitt equation" is non-linear and unstable to forming a condensate of baby universes. This will occur even in the classical c → ∞ limit. Small fluctuations about this background describe the propagation of single universes and satisfy a more conventional linear Wheeler-DeWitt equation. The resulting two-dimensional cosmology depends on details of the non-linear dynamics. In particular the existence of a large-scale cosmological constant is determined by the behavior of a string theoretic tachyon potential near its minimum.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)132-162
Number of pages31
JournalNuclear Physics, Section B
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 30 Sept 1991

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
*Work supported by the Department of Energy under contract DE-AC03-76SFOO515. ** Supported in part by NSF grant PHY89-17438.


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