2
votes
2answers
70 views

Independent components in a 4-vector representing massless fields

In Ryder Page141, it is written "the electromagnetic field, like any massless field, possesses only two independent components, but is covariantly described by a 4-vector $A_{\mu}$". Why are there ...
0
votes
1answer
85 views

General relativity: gauge fixing

In his lectures professor Hamber said that the metric tensor is not unique, just like the 4 vector potential is not unique for a unique field in electrodynamics. Since the metric tensor is symmetric, ...
5
votes
2answers
147 views

Questions about the degree of freedom in General Relatity

I'm confused about the number of degrees of freedom in General Relatity. There are two ways to count it. However, they are contradictory. For simplicity, we consider vacuum solution. First, ...
8
votes
2answers
133 views

Counting the number of propagating degrees of freedom in Lorenz Gauge Electrodynamics

How do I definitively show that there are only two propagating degrees of freedom in the Lorenz Gauge $\partial_\mu A^\mu=0$ in classical electrodynamics. I need an clear argument that involves the ...
4
votes
2answers
180 views

How many physical degrees of freedom does the $\mathrm{SU(N)}$ Yang-Mills theory have?

The $\mathrm{U(1)}$ QED case has two physical degrees of freedom, which is easy to understand because the free electromagnetic field must be transverse to the direction of propagation. But what are ...
0
votes
0answers
117 views

Degrees of freedom of the photon in $d=n$

It is well known that in ordinary $4$ dimension, the photon has on shell only two physical degrees of freedom. Physically this means its elicity is either $\lambda=+1$ or $\lambda=-1$ but cannot ...
1
vote
2answers
437 views

Polarization vectors of massive and massless particles

I read from Mandl & Shaw that when quantizing massless vector particles such as photons in Lorentz gauge, there are 4 linearly independent polarization vectors (2 of them being able to "gauged ...
4
votes
3answers
549 views

Degrees of freedom of the graviton versus classical degrees of freedom

I have a puzzle I can not even understand. A graviton is generally understood in $D$ dimensions as a field with some independent components or degrees of freedom (DOF), from a traceless symmetric ...
5
votes
1answer
553 views

Counting degrees of freedom for gravitational waves as a gauge field

Sean Carroll has a new popularization about the Higgs, The Particle at the End of the Universe. Carroll is a relativist, and I enjoyed seeing how he presented the four forces of nature synoptically, ...
4
votes
2answers
588 views

Counting degrees of freedom in presence of constraints

In a $N$ dimensional phase space if I have $M$ 1st class and $S$ 2nd class constraints, then I have $N-2M-S$ degrees of freedom in phase space. How can I calculate the degrees of freedom in ...
3
votes
3answers
731 views

Counting degrees of freedom of gauge bosons

Gauge bosons are represented by $A_{\mu}$, where $\mu = 0,1,2,3$. So in general there are 4 degrees of freedom. But in reality, a photon (gauge boson) has two degrees of freedom (two polarization ...