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7
votes
2answers
425 views

Why does $\mathcal L = -\frac14 F^{\mu\nu} F_{\mu\nu}$ imply Photons are massless?

The Lagrangian $\mathcal L = -\frac14 F^{\mu\nu} F_{\mu\nu}$ with $F_{\mu\nu} = \partial_\mu A_\nu - \partial_\nu A_\mu$ results in the four-potential's equation of motion $$ \underbrace{\partial^\mu ...
3
votes
3answers
448 views

Quantum mechanical angular momentum and spin formalism/notation

I am currently stuck on the following notation: $\frac{1}{2}\otimes\frac{1}{2} = 0 \text{ (antisym) } \oplus 1 \text{ (sym) }$ No matter what I tried, I couldn't derive the identity. I am sure that ...
1
vote
1answer
158 views

Action of the Lorentz group on scalar fields

The Lorentz groups act on the scalar fields as: $\phi'(x)=\phi(\Lambda^{-1} x)$ The conditions for an action of a group on a set are that the identity does nothing and that $(g_1g_2)s=g_1(g_2s)$. ...
9
votes
1answer
248 views

Why do we classify states under covering groups instead of the group itself?

Why do we always classify states under covering group representations instead of the group itself? For example see the following picture I lifted from 'Symmetry in physics' by Gross So in the first ...
6
votes
1answer
254 views

Equivalent Representations of Clifford Algebra

I'm reviewing David Tong's excellent QFT lecture notes here and am a little confused by something he writes on page 94. We've considered the standard chiral representation of the Clifford Algebra, ...
5
votes
2answers
597 views

Number of Components of a Spinor

I'm trying to develop my understanding of spinors. In quantum field theory I've learned that a spinor is a 4 component complex vector field on Minkowski space which transforms under the chiral ...
1
vote
2answers
391 views

high spin atoms SU(2) representation

I am very confused that some atoms called high spin or magnetic atoms have spin level more than $\frac{1}{2}$ but are still said to have $SU(2)$ symmetry. Why not $SU(N)$?
8
votes
5answers
857 views

The role of representation theory in QM/QFT?

I need help understanding the role of representation theory in QM/QFT. My understanding of representation theory in this context is as follows: there are physical symmetries of the system we are ...
4
votes
2answers
536 views

How do I derive the transformation law of a Weyl spinor under a Lorentz transformation?

Let $\xi$ be a spinor. If $(\theta ,\phi)$ are the parameters of a rotation and pure Lorentz transformation, then how can we prove that the transformation rule for $\xi$ can be written as $$\xi ...
2
votes
1answer
229 views

Taylor series for unitary operator in Weinberg

On page 54 of Weinberg's QFT I, he says that an element $T(\theta)$ of a connected Lie group can be represented by a unitary operator $U(T(\theta))$ acting on the physical Hilbert space. Near the ...
6
votes
4answers
1k views

Calculating the commutator of Pauli-Lubanski operator and generators of Lorentz group

The Pauli-Lubanski operator is defined as $${W^\alpha } = \frac{1}{2}{\varepsilon ^{\alpha \beta \mu \nu }}{P_\beta}{M_{\mu \nu }},\qquad ({\varepsilon ^{0123}} = + 1,\;{\varepsilon _{0123}} = - ...
1
vote
2answers
612 views

Tensor product decomposition of SU(2)

I have a rather trivial question. I am looking for the decomposition of $1/2\otimes 1/2\otimes 1/2$. It should give, $0,1/2$ and $3/2$. I thought one must get as the overall dimension of this space 8, ...
6
votes
2answers
985 views

Particle as a representation of the Lorentz group

In QFT one may refer to a particle as a representation of the Lorentz group (LG). More accurately - every particle is a quantum of some field $\phi(x)$ that belongs to some representation of the LG. I ...
9
votes
2answers
688 views

Schwinger representation of operators for n-particle 2-mode symmetric states

A bosonic (i.e. permutation-symmetric) state of $n$ particles in $2$ modes can be written as a homogenous polynomial in the creation operators, that is $$\left(c_0 \hat{a}^{\dagger n} + c_1 ...
3
votes
1answer
649 views

Does a spin-2 particle really return to its previous state after 180° rotation?

It is often claimed that spin-2 particles return to their previous state after $\pi$ rotation, just like spin-1/2 particles return after $4\pi$ rotation. But my calculation suggests otherwise. Let z ...
4
votes
2answers
214 views

Are there any known potentially useful nontrivial irreducible representations of the Lorentz Group $O(3,1)$ of dimension bigger than 4? Examples?

Are there any known potentially useful, nontrivial, irreducible representations of the Lorentz Group $O(3,1)$ of dimension more than $4$? Examples? A $5$-dimensional representation? EDIT: Is there ...
2
votes
1answer
164 views

How do representations of an isometry group correspond to degrees of freedom/entropy in a system?

To put the question into context: I am currently writing my bachelors thesis on de Sitter space, specifically, $dS_4$. I am trying to show that while the horizon entropy is finite, the isometry group ...
22
votes
4answers
2k views

Could the Periodic Table have been done using group theory?

These three questions are phrased as alternative-history questions, but my real intent is to understand better how well different modeling approaches fit the phenomena they are used to describe; see 1 ...
12
votes
1answer
629 views

Is this a quaternion representation of the equations of motion of General Relativity?

In The Quaternion Group and Modern Physics by P.R. Girard, the quaternion form of the general relativistic equation of motion is derived from $du'/ds = (d a / d s ) u {a_c}^* + a u ( d {a_c}^* / ...
12
votes
2answers
4k views

Adding 3 electron spins

I've learned how to add two 1/2-spins, which you can do with C-G-coefficients. There are 4 states (one singlet, three triplet states). States are symmetric or antisymmetric and the quantum numbers ...
3
votes
2answers
432 views

Why is there a phase factor when the two composite angular momentum is exchanged in Clebsch–Gordan coefficients

An identity exists for CG coefficients: $$\langle j_1 m_1 j_2 m_2 |J M \rangle = (-1)^{j_1+j_2-J} \langle j_2 m_2 j_1 m_1|J M\rangle,$$ But why is there a phase factor $(-1)^{j_1+j_2-J}$? It seems ...
1
vote
1answer
1k views

Yukawa Coupling of a Scalar $SU(2)$ Triplet to a Left-Handed Fermionic $SU(2)$ Doublet

Suppose we have a field theory with a single complex scalar field $\phi$ and a single Dirac Fermion $\psi$, both massless. Let us write $\psi _L=\frac{1}{2}(1-\gamma ^5)\psi$. Then, the Yukawa ...
1
vote
1answer
672 views

Wigner-Eckart projection theorem

I'm following the proof of Wigner-Eckart projection theorem which states that: $$\langle \bf{A} \rangle ~=~ \frac{\langle \bf{A} \cdot \bf{J} \rangle}{\langle {\bf{J}}^2 \rangle} \langle \bf{J} ...
5
votes
2answers
735 views

Is this a quaternion Lorentz Boost?

The quaternion Lorentz boost $v'=hvh^*+ 1/2( (hhv)^*-(h^*h^*v)^*)$ where $h$ is $(\cosh(x),\sinh(x),0,0)$ was derived by substituting the hyperbolic sine and cosine for the sine and cosine in the ...
1
vote
1answer
115 views

One-Plaquette Action and SU(2)'s Irreducible Representations

I have a typical single-plaquette partition function for a gauge-field $$ Z=\int [d U_{\text{link}}] \exp[-\sum_{p} S_{p}(U,a)]$$ with $U$ as the product of the the $U$'s assigned to each link around ...
1
vote
0answers
44 views

How to obtain deconfined theory from an s-confined N=1 susy gauge theory?

Is there a systematic procedure for obtaining a deconfined theory from an s-confining theory (as defined in hep-th/9610139 for example)?
15
votes
1answer
2k views

How do I construct the $SU(2)$ representation of the Lorentz Group using $SU(2)\times SU(2)\sim SO(3,1)$ ?

This question is based on problem II.3.1 in Anthony Zee's book Quantum Field Theory in a Nutshell (I'm reading this for fun- it isn't a homework problem.) Show, by explicit calculation, that ...
5
votes
1answer
533 views

Wigner-Eckart theorem of SU(3)

I have just come across the Wigner-Eckart theorem and am not sure on how to apply it. How do I find the matrix elements of $\langle u|T_a|v\rangle$ in terms of tensor components and the Gell-Mann ...
3
votes
1answer
403 views

How do I find the tensor components of all weights of a representation of $SU(3)$, e.g. the six dimensional representation $(2,0)$?

How do I find the corresponding tensor component $v^{ij}$ of the six dimensional representation of $SU(3)$ with Dynkin label $(2,0)$?
5
votes
1answer
788 views

Introduction to Physical Content from Adjoint Representations

In particle Physics it's usual to write the physical content of a Theory in adjoint representations of the Gauge group. For example: $24\rightarrow (8,1)_0\oplus (1,3)_0\oplus (1,1)_0\oplus ...
2
votes
1answer
243 views

How could $\textbf{S}^2$ not be a multiple of the identity?

I'm self-studying quantum mechanics with Sakurai's book (Modern Quantum Mechanics, 2nd edition) and came across the following in reference to the operator $\textbf{S}^2$: As will be shown in ...
3
votes
1answer
387 views

Angular Momentum Addition Theorem - Sanity Check

Looking back at my quantum mechanics notes, the angular momentum addition theorem is listed as: $j=j_1+j_2,j_1+j_2-1, ..., |j_1-j_2| $ (Using conventional notation) , but I'm a little unsure how to ...
5
votes
2answers
289 views

If the S-matrix has symmetry group G, must the fields be representations of G?

If the fields in QFT are representations of the Poincare group (or generally speaking the symmetry group of interest), then I think it's a straight forward consequence that the matrix elements and ...
1
vote
1answer
308 views

Irreducible tensor representations with “covariant” indices

As a follow-up of my question on the "most general" $\mathrm{SU}(2)$-symmetric interaction of two spin 1/2 particles, I ponder the following question: Consider an operator acting just on one particle ...
3
votes
1answer
355 views

Constructing the “most general” two-particle spin interaction with $SU(2)$ symmetry

Suppose I want to write down an interaction term for an action for spin 1/2 fermions that is $SU(2)$-symmetric. I start from the most naive general form of such an action: $$S_{int} ~=~ \int_{4321} ...
3
votes
2answers
319 views

A question from Weinberg QFT text

In page 71 Weinberg's QFT, $$A\Psi^{\theta }_{a,b} ~=~(a\cos{(\theta )}-b\sin{(\theta )})\Psi^{\theta }_{a,b}.$$ He says that massless particles represented by $\Psi ^{\theta }_{a,b}$ are not ...
13
votes
1answer
918 views

What is a general definition of the spin of a particle?

In quantum field theory, one defines a particle as a unitary irreducible representations of the Poincaré group. The study of these representations allows to define the mass and the spin of the ...
4
votes
1answer
1k views

General procedure for Clebsch-Gordan expansions

I'm wondering if the Clebsch-Gordan series generalize to any orthonormal set of basis functions? If so, how would one go about deriving an expression for an arbitrary set of basis functions (perhaps ...
3
votes
3answers
968 views

Building the meson octet and singlet

I am very lost in this topic. I understand that there are $3\times 3$ possible combinations of a quark and an anti-quark, but why should one decide arbitrarily (that's how it appears to me) that one ...
2
votes
1answer
528 views

Decomposition of SU(N) adjoint representation under SU(2)

I am having trouble in demonstrating that under SU(2) transformations the adjoint representation of SU(N) transforms as one spin 1, 2(N-2) spin $\frac12$ and singlets. I am trying to demonstrate it ...
9
votes
1answer
754 views

Identification of the state of particle types with representations of Poincare group

In the second chapter of the first volume of his books on QFT, Weinberg writes in the last paragraph of page 63: In general, it may be possible by using suitable linear combinations of the ...
1
vote
2answers
1k views

Irreducible representation in physics

I am confused about something. Group theory books written for physicists say that any reducible representation can be decomposed in terms of irreducible representations (so correct me if I am wrong, ...
3
votes
1answer
112 views

Charge of a field under the action of a group

What does it mean for a field (say, $\phi$) to have a charge (say, $Q$) under the action of a group (say, $U(1)$)?
5
votes
3answers
511 views

The Asymmetry between Real and Imaginary in the three Pauli Spin Matrices

The Pauli spin matrices $$ \sigma_1 ~=~ (\begin{smallmatrix} 0 & 1 \\ 1 & 0 \end{smallmatrix}), \qquad\qquad \sigma_2 ~=~ (\begin{smallmatrix} 0 & -i \\ i & 0 ...
3
votes
1answer
61 views

A nice overview (and maybe derivation) of the Poincaré transformations of the Vector Spherical Harmonics

With $Y_{lm}(\vartheta,\varphi)$ being the Spherical Harmonics and $z_l^{(j)}(r)$ being the Spherical Bessel functions ($j=1$), Neumann functions ($j=2$) or Hankel functions ($j=3,4$) defining ...
13
votes
1answer
655 views

Wick rotation and spinors

I am quite familiar with use of Wick rotations in QFT, but one thing annoys me: let's say we perform it for treating more conveniently (ie. making converge) a functional integral containing spinors; ...
7
votes
2answers
739 views

How does non-Abelian gauge symmetry imply the quantization of the corresponding charges?

I read an unjustified treatment in a book, saying that in QED charge an not quantized by the gauge symmetry principle (which totally clear for me: Q the generator of $U(1)$ can be anything in ...
4
votes
1answer
175 views

What is the definition of precession (in the context of Spinors)?

What is the definition of "precession"? How is it applicable to abstract objects such as Spinors? I understand the mathematics, but don't understand what one means by "precession angle" etc when it ...
6
votes
0answers
259 views

Coupling Coefficients in SO(4)

I have two equations (from two distinct authors) for the decomposition of a coupling coefficient of SO(4) (i.e. Wigner 3j-symbol for SO(4)). In the first: ...
1
vote
1answer
120 views

What is an isoscalar factor?

I need to find a definition for "the isoscalar factors of 3j-symbols for the restriction $SO(n)\supset SO(n-1)$...denoted by brackets with a composite subscript $(n: n-1)$..." They are given as: $$ ...