Direct Higgs-gravity interaction and stability of our universe
The Higgs effective potential becomes unstable at approximately 1011 GeV, and if only standard model interactions are considered, the lifetime τ of the electroweak vacuum turns out to be much larger than the age of the Universe TU. It is well known, however, that τ is extremely sensitive to the presence of unknown new physics: the latter can enormously lower τ. This poses a serious problem for the stability of our Universe, demanding for a physical mechanism that protects it from a disastrous decay. We have found that there exists a universal stabilizing mechanism that naturally originates from the nonminimal coupling between gravity and the Higgs boson. As this Higgs-gravity interaction necessarily arises from the quantum dynamics of the Higgs field in a gravitational background, this stabilizing mechanism is certainly present. It is not related to any specific model, being rather natural and universal as it comes from fundamental pillars of our physical world: gravity, the Higgs field, and the quantum nature of physical laws.