Mississippi professor featured in international magazine for space research

Published 6:20 am Tuesday, January 31, 2023

Research by Mississippi State Professor Jinwu Ye is featured in Nature—the world’s leading multidisciplinary science journal—as part of an interdisciplinary team whose computer coding created a holographic universe in order to test the existence of space-time passages or wormholes.

The article “Traversable wormhole dynamics on a quantum processor” was published by the prestigious publication at the end of last year, referencing work by Ye, a faculty member in MSU’s Department of Physics and Astronomy. To read the complete article, visit https://www.nature.com/articles/s41586-022-05424-3.

The article details how researchers were able to simulate two black holes in a quantum computer and send a message between them, validating the possibility of theorized shortcuts through spacetime called wormholes.

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To run the experiment, the team used their simple model of a universe called an SYK model, named after Ye and its other creators Subir Sachdev of Harvard University and Alexei Kitaev of the California Institute of Technology.

The experiment used two SYK systems as black holes and running qubits, units of quantum information, sending them from one to the other. The first system scrambled the qubits into nonsense, similar to an actual black hole, “swallowing” cosmic matter. However, when the two systems were connected, researchers discovered the qubits would “pop out” of the second system in their original form, thus supporting the possibility of wormholes.

“The cosmological experiments to study real quantum black holes and wormholes in the galaxy remain a science fiction with the present technology. So various table-top experiments, including but not limited to a small size quantum computer, to simulate them is the only real option at this moment. Why not experiment with the SYK models in table-top experiments and explore all these fantastic properties of 2D quantum black holes and wormholes?” said Ye, whose research adds a different take on a non-unitary version of the SYK models.

For 14 decades, Nature has published top-quality peer-reviewed research in all fields of science. For more information, visit www.nature.com.

Ye’s research focuses on condensed matter theory with expertise in strongly correlated electron systems and topological phases. His research also extends to conformal field theory, emergent space-time structure and quantum black holes.