The S-Matrix Is the Oracle Physicists Turn To in Times of Crisis

"Particle physicists in search of the next theory of reality are consulting a mathematical structure that they know will never fail: a table of possibilities known as the S-matrix."

The concept of the S-matrix was first explored by Paul Dirac, frequent past Member in the then-School of Mathematics/Natural Sciences. Another Member (1937) in the School, John Wheeler, "who coined the terms 'quantum foam' and 'wormhole,' came up with the name."

Sebastian Mizera, current Member in the School of Natural Sciences, hopes that, in his continuing work on S-matrix theory, further insights can be gained by focusing attentions "on massless particles like gluons."

"At a workshop [held at IAS] in March, Mizera met with fellow S-matrix enthusiasts. Inspired by recent progress, they continue to seek more universal rules that govern all S-matrices. [...] They focus on observations, striving to discover truths that will endure even when the shape of future theories remains uncertain."

Read the full article at Quanta Magazine.