Jorge Pullin

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Jorge Pullin (/ˈpʊlɪn/; born 1963 in Argentina) is the Horace Hearne Chair in theoretical Physics at the Louisiana State University, known for his work on black hole collisions and quantum gravity.


Jorge Pullin attended the University of Buenos Aires (electrical engineering) for two years before leaving for Instituto Balseiro in Argentina to finish a M.Sc. in Physics (1986). Then he moved to the University of Córdoba to pursue his Ph.D. which was submitted in 1988 to the Instituto Balseiro; his advisor was Reinaldo J. Gleiser.

He moved to Syracuse University in 1989 and to the University of Utah in 1991 as a postdoc. He joined the faculty of Penn State University in 1993, where he was promoted to associate professor in 1997 and full professor in 2000. In 2001 he moved to Louisiana State University, where he is the co-director of the Horace Hearne Institute.[1][2]

Pullin's wife Gabriela González is also a gravitational physics researcher; she and Pullin met at a gravitational physics meeting in Córdoba, Argentina. Pullin and González spent six years living apart while Pullin was at Penn State and González held a position at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, a situation that was resolved when they both were hired by LSU.[3]

Awards and honors[edit]

In 1998, the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation selected Pullin as a Guggenheim Fellow,[1] and in 2001 he won a Fulbright Fellowship to visit the Universidad de la Republica in Uruguay.[4] In 2001, the American Physical Society honored him with the Edward A. Bouchet Award, recognizing him as "a distinguished minority physicist who has made significant contributions to physics research".[2] He is a corresponding member of the National Academy of Science of Uruguay, the Mexican Academy of Sciences, the Argentinian National Academy of Sciences, and the Latin American Academy of Sciences, and a Fellow of the American Physical Society, of the Institute of Physics, and of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.[5][6][7][8]


Pullin's book (with R. Gambini) Loops, Knots, Gauge Theories and Quantum Gravity[9] surveys the state of the art in loop quantum gravity at the time of its publication. Reviewer Jerzy Lewandowski writes "the book should allow people from outside the loopy circles to gain access in the current state of the art. But most of all it allows experts within this wide field to learn more about the original constructions which were invented and applied in quantization of gravity by Gambini and Pullin themselves."[10] Chris Isham adds that "this is a most valuable addition to the scientific literature",[11] while Hugo A. Morales-Técotl calls it "useful for an immersion in the subject."[12]

Pullin's most-cited research paper, on nonstandard optics,[13] studies the propagation of light within theories of loop quantum gravity and shows that these theories lead to predictions of behavior different from Maxwell's equations for light propagation in classical physics. Pullin, Gambini, and Bernd Brügman also wrote a series of papers that make an important connection between knot theory and quantum gravity, by showing that the Jones polynomial can be used to solve a quantum form of Einstein's equations.[14]

Pullin is also known for a series of papers on the theory and numerical simulation of colliding black holes.[15] Pullin's early work on the subject (including his second most cited paper, from 1994) involves the "close approximation" in which a pair of nearby black holes is treated mathematically as a single non-spherical black hole; since joining LSU his work on this area has been based instead on supercomputer simulation. Another pair of his papers studies a simplified mathematical model of the radiation emitted when a star collapses into a black hole, and shows that it compares favorably to numerical simulations.[16]


  1. ^ a b "Pullin named Guggenheim Fellow Archived 2007-08-06 at the Wayback Machine.", PSU Science Alert, June 24, 1998.
  2. ^ a b "American Physical Society Honors Pullin Archived 2007-01-01 at the Wayback Machine.", PSU, News about the Eberly College of Science, December 7, 2000.
  3. ^ Valerie Jamieson, "Love and the two-body problem",, October 31, 2001.
  4. ^ "LSU professor wins Fulbright fellowship", The Advocate (Baton Rouge), October 26, 2001.
  5. ^ Biographical summary of Pullin from American Physical Society 2007 election statements.
  6. ^ "Professor Named Corresponding Member of Argentinian National Academy of Sciences Archived 2010-06-10 at the Wayback Machine.", LSU News, January 10, 2007.
  7. ^ "Two LSU Professors Named AAAS Fellows Archived 2010-06-10 at the Wayback Machine.", LSU News, November 28, 2006.
  8. ^ "Pullin elected Fellow of American Physical Society Archived 2006-09-22 at the Wayback Machine.", LSU News, April 1, 2003.
  9. ^ Gambini, Rodolfo; Pullin, Jorge (1996), Loops, Knots, Gauge Theories and Quantum Gravity, Cambridge University Press, ISBN 0-521-65475-0 .
  10. ^ Lewandowski, Jerzy (1998), "Book Review: Loops, Knots, Gauge Theories and Quantum Gravity", General Relativity and Gravitation, 30 (2): 339–340, Bibcode:1998GReGr..30..339L, doi:10.1023/A:1018813215317 .
  11. ^ Isham, Chris (1999), "Book Reviews: Loops, Knots, Gauge Theories and Quantum Gravity", Bulletin of the London Mathematical Society, 31: 255–256, doi:10.1112/s0024609398265027 .
  12. ^ MR1439964.
  13. ^ Gambini, Rodolfo; Pullin, Jorge (1999), "Nonstandard optics from quantum space-time", Phys. Rev. D, 59 (12): 124021, arXiv:gr-qc/9809038Freely accessible, Bibcode:1999PhRvD..59l4021G, doi:10.1103/PhysRevD.59.124021 .
  14. ^ Brügmann, Bernd; Gambini, Rodolfo; Pullin, Jorge (1992), "Jones Polynomials for Intersecting Knots as Physical States of Quantum Gravity", Nucl.Phys., B385 (3): 587–603, arXiv:hep-th/9202018Freely accessible, Bibcode:1992NuPhB.385..587B, doi:10.1016/0550-3213(92)90060-O . Brügmann, Bernd; Gambini, Rodolfo; Pullin, Jorge (1993), "How the Jones polynomial gives rise to physical states of quantum general relativity", General Relativity and Gravitation, 25 (1): 1–6, arXiv:hep-th/9203040Freely accessible, Bibcode:1993GReGr..25....1B, doi:10.1007/BF00756923 . Gambini, Rodolfo; Pullin, Jorge (1993), "Quantum Einstein-Maxwell fields: A unified viewpoint from the loop representation", Phys. Rev. D, 47 (12): R5214–R5218, arXiv:hep-th/9210110Freely accessible, Bibcode:1993PhRvD..47.5214G, doi:10.1103/PhysRevD.47.R5214 .
  15. ^ E.g., Price, Richard J.; Pullin, Jorge (1994), "Colliding black holes: The close limit", Phys. Rev. Lett., 72 (21): 3297–3300, arXiv:gr-qc/9402039Freely accessible, Bibcode:1994PhRvL..72.3297P, doi:10.1103/PhysRevLett.72.3297, PMID 10056162 . Anninos, Peter; Price, Richard H.; Pullin, Jorge; Seidel, Edward; Suen, Wai-Mo (1995), "Head-on collision of two black holes: Comparison of different approaches", Phys. Rev. D, 52 (8): 4462–4480, arXiv:gr-qc/9505042Freely accessible, Bibcode:1995PhRvD..52.4462A, doi:10.1103/PhysRevD.52.4462 . Gleiser, Reinaldo J.; Nicasio, Carlos O.; Price, Richard H.; Pullin, Jorge (1996), "Colliding Black Holes: How Far Can the Close Approximation Go?", Phys. Rev. Lett., 77 (22): 4483–4486, arXiv:gr-qc/9609022Freely accessible, Bibcode:1996PhRvL..77.4483G, doi:10.1103/PhysRevLett.77.4483, PMID 10062550 . Brandt, Steve; Correll, Randall; Gómez, Roberto; Huq, Mijan; Laguna, P; Lehner, L; Marronetti, P; Matzner, RA; et al. (2000), "Grazing Collisions of Black Holes via the Excision of Singularities", Phys. Rev. Lett., 85 (26): 5496–5499, arXiv:gr-qc/0009047Freely accessible, Bibcode:2000PhRvL..85.5496B, doi:10.1103/PhysRevLett.85.5496, PMID 11136030 .
  16. ^ Gundlach, Carsten; Price, Richard H.; Pullin, Jorge (1994), "Late-time behavior of stellar collapse and explosions. I. Linearized perturbations", Phys. Rev. D, 49 (2): 883–889, arXiv:gr-qc/9307009Freely accessible, Bibcode:1994PhRvD..49..883G, doi:10.1103/PhysRevD.49.883 . Gundlach, Carsten; Price, Richard H.; Pullin, Jorge (1994), "Late-time behavior of stellar collapse and explosions. II. Nonlinear evolution", Phys. Rev. D, 49 (2): 890–899, arXiv:gr-qc/9307010Freely accessible, Bibcode:1994PhRvD..49..890G, doi:10.1103/PhysRevD.49.890 .

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