“The Many Faces of Black Holes”

Abhay Ashtekar is holding a public lecture on the 10th anniversary of “Living Reviews in Relativity”

June 02, 2008

Just over 30 years ago, black holes were not taken seriously by scientists - their existence or significance was largely doubted. Today the exploration of black holes has become one of the most important quests of modern physics. Black holes astound, irritate and astonish experts repeatedly. They are a veritable treasure chest of fundamental physics, because they underline the powerful interplay of gravity and geometry in our universe. In addition, they provide scientists with essential information about possible connections between the three pillars of modern physics: the general theory of relativity, quantum field theory and statistical mechanics. Can black holes give us the answer to what holds our world together? So far they have shown us many faces ....

At the invitation of the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics (Albert Einstein Institute/AEI), Prof. Dr. Abhay Ashtekar will be giving a lecture on Tuesday, 3 June 2008 on the fascinating world of black holes, taking into account the most recent research results.

“The Many Faces of Black Holes” at 7 p.m. at the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Unter den Linden 6, 10117 Berlin, Main Building, Lecture Hall 2097.

The lecture is taking place in honour of the 10th anniversary of “Living Reviews in Relativity.”

“Living Reviews in Relativity” presents online articles, so-called reviews, which are written by outstanding scientists in the area of relativity theory and then regularly updated. The reader is therefore always kept up-to-date with research in the relevant subject area. In addition, special navigation tools and links to other sources in the network create a special dynamism and user friendliness within the articles.

The success of “Living Reviews in Relativity” is mainly due to its perception of itself as a service of scientists for scientists and the fact that high-quality articles are free of charge in accordance with the Open Access Movement.

Profile of Prof. Dr. Abhay Ashtekar

Abhay Ashtekar was born July 5, 1949 in India. He studied physics and mathematics at the University of Bombay and, in 1974, at the University of Chicago, USA. From 1983 to1985 he was a Professor and held the chair in gravitation at the Pierre and Marie Curie University in Paris, France. In 1984 Ashtekar had already returned to the USA to take an appointment as a professor of physics at Syracuse University, where he, inter alia, became the Erastus Franklin Holden Professor of Physics. Since 1993 Abhay Ashtekar has been Director of the Institute for Gravitation and the Cosmos at Pennsylvania State University and holds the Eberly Chair of Physics. His scientific research focuses on the areas of quantum gravitation and the general theory of relativity. Ashtekar is a member of the American Physical Society, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, as well as an honorary member of the National Academy of Sciences in India. Moreover, he is also editor of the journal “Advances in Mathematical and Theoretical Physics.”

Abhay Ashtekar is renowned worldwide as a scientist and has received many international awards. In 2004 he was granted the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation Research Award and he was elected President of the International Society of General Relativity and Gravitation (2007-2010).

Living Reviews

“Living Reviews in Relativity” is published by the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics (Albert Einstein Institute) in Potsdam-Golm and the Max Planck Digital Library (MPDL).

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