Go, wondrous creature, mount where science guides.
Go, measure earth, weigh air, and state the tides;
Instruct the planets in what orbs to run,
Correct old Time, and regulate the sun;
Go, teach Eternal Wisdom how to rule,
Then drop into thyself and be a fool.
Until a few decades ago, our quantitative probes of gravity were restricted to the orbits of planets/satellites and motion of light within the Solar System. Now, we are entering an exciting period of inquiry into the fundamental nature of gravity, heralded by the design of more precise tabletop experiments, the discovery of new binary pulsar systems, the birth of ‘precision cosmology,’ and the immediate possibility of the direct detection of gravitational-waves.
My research lies at the interface between cosmology and gravity. The latter occupies a unique place among the fundamental forces of nature: as the ‘universal force,’ it plays an essential role in the evolution of the universe, from the big bang to today; as the only known force that cannot be written within a consistent quantum theory, its underlying nature will help elucidate the ‘theory of everything’; lastly, as the weakest force, gravity may allow us to see the universe as it was immediately following the big bang.
• For a list of the research papers I have coauthored click here.
• Click here to see an article for Scientific American I coauthored with my colleague Sudeep Das on neutrinos in cosmology.
• Before joining the faculty at Swarthmore I was a postdoc at the Berkeley Center for Cosmological Physics.