Breakdown of the Einstein's Equivalence Principle for a quantum body

Andrei G. Lebed, Andrei G. Lebed

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We review our recent theoretical results about inequivalence between passive gravitational mass and energy for a composite quantum body at a macroscopic level. In particular, we consider macroscopic ensembles of the simplest composite quantum bodies - hydrogen atoms. Our results are as follows. For the most ensembles, the Einstein's Equivalence Principle is valid. On the other hand, we discuss that for some special quantum ensembles - ensembles of the coherent superpositions of the stationary quantum states in the hydrogen atoms (which we call Gravitational demons) - the Equivalence Principle between passive gravitational mass and energy is broken. We show that, for such superpositions, the expectation values of passive gravitational masses are not related to the expectation values of energies by the famous Einstein's equation, i.e. mg=E c2. Possible experiments at the Earth's laboratories are briefly discussed, in contrast to the numerous attempts and projects to discover the possible breakdown of the Einstein's Equivalence Principle during the space missions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number2030010
JournalModern Physics Letters A
Issue number20
StatePublished - Jun 28 2020


  • Equivalence Principle
  • mass-energy equivalence
  • quantum gravity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics
  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


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