This is similar to how a two-dimensional hologram on credit cards or bank notes contains all the information needed to give the appearance of an object in three dimensions.
The “holographic principle” is not new, but recent research from Vienna attempted to determine if it also holds in the flat spacetime of our universe. Previously, physicists had only studied this principle in exotic spaces with negative curvature, which are remarkably different from our own.
The researchers spent the past few years trying to calculate whether the holographic principle would work in our universe. They published their findings this week in the journal Physical Review Letters, showing that it just might.
“This calculation affirms our assumption that the holographic principle can also be realized in flat spaces. It is evidence for the validity of this correspondence in our universe,” team member Max Riegler, from the Vienna University of Technology, told Forbes.
The team’s findings do not yet prove that we are living in a hologram, although it is something that could be tested in Fermilab’s Holometer.
In fact, the research team is currently running an experiment there that will look to see if the space-time of our universe “jitters” or remains steady. This would be a sign of “holographic noise,” indicating that our three-dimensional universe may be built from simpler information.