Testing General Relativity in Fermilab
University of Missouri-Columbia
Modern theories of the fundamental particles and the interactions among them have achieved a simple and coherent description of an unprecedented range of natural phenomena, but our new understanding raises intriguing new questions. Though there is a growing confidence in our ability to unify electroweak and strong interactions in a single gauge theory, gravity remains widely separated from the particle physics. In fact, road to a correct description of quantum gravity depends crucially on if experimental search methods end up with a negative or positive answer for the presence of higher-curvature space-time dimensions. Our theoretical study of general-relativistic gravitational force generated by a 1 Tev bunch of protons at Fermilab Tevatron accelerator demonstrates that the force has many similarities with the synchrotron radiation, and is in the range of sensitivity of modern low-frequency (torsion balance-type) detectors. Its measurement may open new fascinating opportunities for experimental study of the unification of gravity with other fundamental interactions presumably including the string theory.