A fully relativistic (Lorentz covariant) description, first put forward by Paul Dirac in 1928, of the first quantized, spin one half fermion with nonzero mass. Physical notions to do with this equation include the Dirac sea, Dirac hole theory, the Klein Paradox and the fine structure of the Hydrogen ...

learn more… | top users | synonyms

16
votes
4answers
2k views

Dimension of Dirac $\gamma$ matrices

While studying the Dirac equation, I came across this enigmatic passage on p. 551 in From Classical to Quantum Mechanics by G. Esposito, G. Marmo, G. Sudarshan regarding the $\gamma$ matrices: $$\...
3
votes
1answer
52 views

Stress-energy tensor for Dirac fields, and its dependence on connection

In the stress-energy tensor (SET) for free scalar and vector fields, any references to the connection $\Gamma^\lambda_{\mu\nu}$ in the kinetic terms appear to either be absent ($\nabla_\mu \phi = \...
0
votes
0answers
20 views

Time derivative of total angular momentum in Dirac equation

I would like to calculate the time derivative of the total angular momentum of a Dirac particle in an electromagnetic field $(\vec A, \phi)$: $$\vec J = \vec r \times (\vec p - \frac{q}{c} \vec A) + \...
0
votes
0answers
30 views

Influence of matter of a star on masses of neutrinos

It is well known that if neutrinos has masses then from Dirac equation it follows that they propagate (in vacuum) as a eigenstates of mass (not as eigenstates of interaction). It's wave function is of ...
2
votes
1answer
109 views

Angular Momentum of the Dirac field

I'm going through the Peskin & Shroeder's discussion on the Dirac field, and I am struggling with a couple of claims they make about angular momentum. First of all, the angular momentum operator ...
7
votes
2answers
153 views

Can we make the Dirac representation a gauge theory?

I'm looking for comments and references about an idea : gauging the Dirac representation of the Dirac matrices. What kind of field interaction would it give ? Specifically, the Dirac equation is ...
0
votes
1answer
143 views

Why is the unitary matrix relating the gamma matrices and their complex conjugates antisymmetical?

In Messiah's Quantum Mechanics Vol. II, properties of the Dirac matrices are derived. There is so-called fundamental theorem, which states that, Let $\gamma^\mu$ and $\gamma^{'\mu}$ be two systems of ...
3
votes
1answer
167 views

How are Clifford algebras related to Dirac Equation

Given a vector space $V$ and a quadratic form $q$ for the vector space. The tensor algebra is defined as $\mathcal{T}(V)=\sum_{i=1}^{\infty} V^{\otimes i}$. The set $\mathcal{I}=\{x\otimes x-q(x)\cdot ...
3
votes
0answers
21 views

Why Weyl fermion in Weyl semimetals(WSM) have high mobility only at low temperature?

I read several papers reporting high Weyl fermion with very high mobility in WSMs such as TaAs, NbAs, WTe2 and so on. However, this high mobility looks like (=Weyl fermion) always appears at only low ...
2
votes
0answers
97 views

How to arrive at the Dirac Equation from Poincare Algebra?

For the case of Galilean group, the time translation is given by the generator $H$. Hence, $$\mid\psi(t)\rangle\to \mid\psi(t+s)\rangle =e^{-iHs}\mid\psi(t)\rangle$$ Which immediately is the ...
9
votes
2answers
331 views

Why are usually 4x4 gamma matrices used? [duplicate]

As far as I understand gamma matrices are a representation of the Dirac algebra and there is a representation of the Lorentz group that can be expressed as $$S^{\mu \nu} = \frac{1}{4} \left[ \gamma^\...
-3
votes
1answer
48 views

Interaction between the positrons in the Dirac theory [closed]

It seems that Dirac did not consider the interaction between the positrons, right? How could he ignore them?
14
votes
5answers
931 views

Is it true that the Schrödinger equation only applies to spin-1/2 particles?

I recently came across a claim that the Schrödinger equation only describes spin-1/2 particles. Is this true? I realize that the question may be ill-posed as some would consider the general ...
5
votes
1answer
72 views

Coupling a spinor field to a preexisting scalar field?

So I'm not a physicist, but I'm thinking about a mathematical problem where I think physical insight might be useful. We're working on a Riemannian manifold $(M,g)$ (positive definite metric) with a ...
4
votes
1answer
101 views

Dirac Equation in RQM (as opposed to QFT) is written in which representation?

In introductory Quantum Mechanics treatments it is common to see the Schrödinger's equation being written, simply as: $$-\dfrac{\hbar^2}{2m}\nabla^2\Psi(\mathbf{r},t)+V(\mathbf{r})\Psi(\mathbf{r},t)=...
4
votes
4answers
174 views

Is time an observable in Relativistic Quantum Mechanics?

Relativistic Quantum Mechanic is based, as far as I know, in the Dirac Equation. Now, the Schrödinger equation, in the abstract state space takes the form: $$i\hbar \dfrac{d|\psi(t)\rangle}{dt}=H|\...
1
vote
1answer
42 views

Why can one suppose $\alpha^i$ and $\beta$ matrices in the derivation of the Dirac Equation?

On the derivation of the Dirac Equation one usually supposes that it is possible to write $$E = \mathbf{\alpha}\cdot \mathbf{p} + \beta m.$$ One then deduces that in order to have $E^2 = p^2+m^2$ it ...
0
votes
0answers
47 views

Local Phase Transformation of the Dirac equation

The Dirac Equation ("free Dirac") is a relativistic Equation of Motion (EoM) for a free ($V=0$) Spin $1/2$ particle (like an electron). The free Dirac equation is invariant under global phase ...
2
votes
1answer
177 views

How do simple two-component Fierz identities follow from a property of the Pauli matrices?

On page 51 Peskin and Schroeder are beginning to derive basic Fierz interchange relations using two-component right-handed spinors. They start by stating the trivial (but tedious) Pauli sigma identity ...
0
votes
0answers
31 views

Variables in the Dirac Equation Lagrangian [duplicate]

(Warning: I'm a student of mathematics with no training in physics.) In derivations of the Dirac equation from an action principle, one encounters the action $$S= \displaystyle\int\,d^4x \,\bar\psi(x)...
0
votes
1answer
64 views

Is there a difference between the adjoint and conjugate?

Is there a difference between the adjoint and conjugate? I have recently started some work for a quantum field theory module and I'm wondering if there is a difference between the adjoint or conjugate ...
4
votes
1answer
74 views

Parity transformations and massless Dirac spinors

I am having a bit of a trouble understanding how a parity transformation acts on Dirac spinors with a well-defined chirality and, in particular, the (intuitively correct, since chirality is related to ...
4
votes
1answer
30 views

Is Charge Conjugation Representation Dependent?

I'm having a problem understanding section 7 of this paper: http://arxiv.org/abs/1006.1718 The author defines the commonly know $\Psi^c$ as $\textit{C}\Psi \textit{C}^{-1}=\eta \hat{\Psi}$ in ...
0
votes
1answer
25 views

Components of Dirac equation solve the Klein Gordan equation derivation

On page 90 of this set of lecture notes on quantum field theory, http://www.damtp.cam.ac.uk/user/tong/qft/four.pdf a simple derivation is given to show that each component Dirac equation solves the ...
0
votes
1answer
47 views

Invertibility of Dirac matrices

Suppose we have Dirac equation in the following form : $i\partial_t\psi = (-i\vec{\alpha}\cdot \nabla +m\beta)\psi$ and assume that the Klein-Gordon equation is satisfied, i.e. $\partial_t^2 \psi =(...
0
votes
1answer
58 views

The true dimension of Dirac field

In natural units with $\hbar=1$ and $c=1$, as we know, the energy dimension of the Dirac field $\psi(x)$ in QED is $\frac{3}{2}$. But in cgs units, what is the true dimension of the Dirac field $\psi(...
3
votes
0answers
103 views

Question about the Dirac equation

Energy and momentum of a particle can be expressed by equation $$E^2=p_1^2c^2+p_2^2c^2+p_3^2c^2+m^2c^4\hspace{40pt}(1)$$ Equation (1) can be divided into $E$ on both sides. We obtain $$E=\frac{v_1}{c}...
1
vote
1answer
13 views

Adjoint Dirac equation (in momentum form) from Dirac eq in momentum form method

I just wanted to check the method I have formulated for the derivation for the adjoint Dirac equation using Gamma matrice notation. This is a problem from the very excellent "Modern Particle Physics" ...
7
votes
1answer
223 views

Are there negative energy states in QED?

I was reading Weinberg I, when I came upon the following statement$^1$ (slightly edited by me): \begin{align} (\not p+m)u=ie\not A\\ (\not p-m)v=ie\not A \tag{1} \end{align} The minus sign on ...
3
votes
2answers
144 views

Spinor field normalisation from poles in the propagator

In the theory of free scalar bosons (KG field) it is a basic result that the propagator $\Delta(p)$ has poles at $p^2=m^2$, with residue $1$ (or any other constant, depending on conventions). Thinking ...
1
vote
1answer
70 views

Plane Wave Solutions of the Dirac Equation

I'm trying to understand the plane wave solutions of the Dirac Equation. But I'm still a newbie on indices notation and contravariant and covariant objects. What I don't understand is how to get: $$(\...
0
votes
0answers
58 views

Plane Wave Solutions to the Majorana Equation with Zero Momentum

My question concerns the plane wave solutions to the Majorana equation. First, recall the Dirac equation: $$(i\gamma^\mu \partial_\mu-m)\psi=0$$ I suggest a solution in the form of a plane wave with $...
1
vote
1answer
58 views

Preference of Chirality

I was interested to see that , $$ \gamma^5 \psi = \psi_R - \psi_L $$ By the definition of chirality projection operator and that $\psi = \psi_R + \psi_L$. since $\gamma^5 \psi$ pops up a lot in QED,...
1
vote
1answer
55 views

Behaviour of Dirac Bilinears

Dirac bilinears transform in the Lorentz indices as, $\bar{\psi}\psi$ scalar $\bar{\psi}\gamma^\mu\psi$ vector $\bar{\psi}\sigma^{\mu\nu}\psi$ 2nd rank (antisymmetric) tensor $\bar{\psi}\gamma^{\mu}\...
1
vote
1answer
31 views

Adjoint momentum Dirac equation

So we have the commonly quoted momentum space version of the Dirac equation and the adjoint Dirac equation: $$ (\gamma^{\mu}p_{\mu}-m)u=0 $$ Often, we are asked to show that the adjoint momentum ...
4
votes
2answers
83 views

Bilinears in adjoint representation

Below are two statements from my notes and I am trying to verify them explicitly. In both cases the fields are assumed to transform under the fundamental representation of $O(N)$ - --'The kinetic ...
0
votes
0answers
41 views

Confusion over trying to understand spinor components

I've been reading about the quantisation of the Dirac field $\psi(x)$ and it is stated that the general solution to the Dirac equation $(i\gamma^{\mu}\partial_{\mu}-m)\psi(x)=0$ is given by the ...
3
votes
1answer
97 views

The dimension of the energy-momentum tensor and the Einstein-Hilbert action

I have been thinking recently what will happen if one uses the energy momentum tensor of the Dirac field as a source in the Einstein Field equations. It is well known that in this case $$ T_{\mu\nu}=...
3
votes
1answer
87 views

Confusion with chirality eigenstates

In the Weyl/chiral basis, the four components of the Dirac spinor represent left-chirality spin up, left-chirality spin down, right-chirality spin up, and right-chirality spin down, respectively. When ...
2
votes
0answers
65 views

Intervalley scattering in graphene in presence of impurities

A long range impurity like coulomb impurity does not induce an inter valley scattering between the two Dirac points. Is there any mathematical explanation for the same although this is explained by ...
2
votes
1answer
118 views

Hermitian properties of Dirac operator

I am trying to understand the Hermiticity of the (massless) Dirac operator in both (flat) Minkowski space and Euclidean space. Let us define the Dirac operator as $D\!\!\!/=\gamma^\mu D_\mu$, where $...
1
vote
0answers
41 views

How do you derive the Dirac Lagrangian density for spinor fields?

I know the how the Dirac Lagrangian is written but I don't understand how to derive it from the general definition $L=T-V$. So I guess I would also like to know what the Kinetic and Potential energies ...
10
votes
2answers
881 views

Exact energies of spherical harmonic oscillator in Dirac equation

The potential is given by: $$ V(r) = {1\over 2} \omega^2 r^2 $$ and we are solving the radial Dirac equation (in atomic units): $$ c{d P(r)\over d r} + c {\kappa\over r} P(r) + Q(r) (V(r)-2mc^2) = E Q(...
11
votes
1answer
334 views

Klein paradox for bosons and fermions

I am reading this paper about the Klein paradox, i.e. transmission of relativistic particles incident on a potential step of height $V_0 > E + mc^2 > 2mc^2$ with $E$ the energy of the incident ...
0
votes
0answers
56 views

Understanding Dirac equation notation

I'm trying to recover the Einstein energy-momentum relation from the Dirac equation. I'm given a solution wavefunction, $$\psi = u(E,\vec p) e^{i(\vec p\cdot\vec x - Et)}$$ with $$\vec u = N\begin{...
0
votes
0answers
50 views

QFT: prove Dirac lagrangian is invariant under C, P, T separately

As it is stated in Peskin, $\mathcal{L}=\bar\Psi(i\gamma_{\mu}\partial^{\mu}-m)\Psi$ is invariant under C,P and T transformation separately. I have some problems to see how the partial derivative is ...
3
votes
0answers
72 views

Why are spin-1/2 particles the simplest particles? [closed]

Paul Dirac, in his interview with Friedrich Hund, mentioned that it was to his surprise that his equation automatically incorporated spin. He said that he thought the simplest theory, for which he was ...
2
votes
1answer
73 views

Dirac equation from a vierbein operator?

Klein-Gordon equation can be derived straightforwardly by getting the mass-energy relation from special relativity in tensorial form, $$\eta^{\mu\nu}p_{\mu}p_{\nu} = m^2c^2$$ and promoting the ...
0
votes
0answers
36 views

Charge conjugation and the conserved charge for the Dirac field

So, while reading Peskin & Schroeder's chapter on the Dirac field, they claim that the charge conjugation operator has the following properties: $$ \mathcal{C}\psi(x) \mathcal{C} = -i \gamma^2 \...
-1
votes
1answer
70 views

Dirac or Schrödinger equation for higher spin?

Given a fermion or boson with an arbitrary integer or half integer spin, then what would be its Dirac or Klein-Gordon equation? Dirac equation for an equation with arbitrary spin 0, 1/2 , 1 , 2 , 3/2 ...