RAS Ordinary Meeting

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Dr Andrew Pontzen (UCL)Genetically modified galaxies
Dr Guillem Anglada-Escudé (QMUL)Proxima b and the search for terrestrial planets around the nearest red dwarfs 2016 GERALD WHITROW LECTUREDr Neil Turok (Perimeter Institute, Canada)Universe A spate of new observations are providing powerful clues about the laws of fundamental physics and the cosmos. The implications are revolutionary: the universe is astonishingly simple on the largest and the smallest observable scales, with great complexity in between. These findings contrast sharply with expectations from popular twentieth century paradigms including inflation, supersymmetry and string theory, which led many to take seriously the idea of a wild and unpredictable "multiverse" on large scales. Key "predictions" derived from that picture have been recently falsified, posing observational challenges to the paradigm which compound its many logical problems. In this talk I will discuss a new, and in my view more promising, approach to understanding the quantum nature and integrity of the universe.