Group theory is a branch of abstract algebra. A group is a set of objects, together with a binary operation, that satisfies four axioms. The set must be closed under the operation and contain an identity object. Every object in the set must have an inverse, and the operation must be associative. ...

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1answer
450 views

Scalar field transformation and generators

When we do a transformation (norm preserving one) for a given quantity, from what I have understood it seems like there is a representation of the group element for each quantity depending how they ...
4
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1answer
257 views

Adjoint representation of the Lorentz group

Is it possible to construct an adjoint representation for the Lorentz group?
12
votes
3answers
491 views

How are symmetries precisely defined?

How are symmetries precisely defined? In basic physics courses it is usual to see arguments on symmetry to derive some equations. This, however, is done in a kind of sloppy way: "we are calculating ...
2
votes
0answers
64 views

Quantum Field Theory and Lie Theory [duplicate]

I am reading Vol.1 of "The Quantum Theory Of Fields" by S. Weinberg. However I have come to a halt when connected Lie groups were introduced. I have solid knowledge in elementary group theory and ...
2
votes
1answer
75 views

1-dimensional Ring geometry - Group of Translations

I considered a Ring-like one dimensional geometry. In this, if we fix an origin (at some point on the circumference), we can think of set of all displacements along the circumference to form a vector ...
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1answer
256 views

Matrix representation of a triplet state

The $SU(2)$ triplet state is typically given in the fundamental representation as a column vector, e.g. \begin{equation} \vec{\Delta} = \left( \begin{array}{c} \delta^{++} \\ \delta^+ \\ ...
2
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2answers
221 views

A question about relativistic spin operator

The question comes from Ryder's Quantum Field Theory, 2nd edition. The author was looking for relativistic spin operator. It was concluded that it cannot be $J^2:=\mathrm{J} \cdot \mathrm{J}$, where ...
6
votes
1answer
351 views

Double connectivity of $SO(3)$ group manifold

Is there any physical significance of the fact that the group manifold (parameter space) of $SO(3)$ is doubly connected? EDIT 1: Let me clarify my question. It was too vague. There exists two ...
2
votes
1answer
215 views

How does $SU(2)$ group enters quantum mechanics?

What is the reason that $SU(2)$ group enters quantum mechanics in the context of rotation but not $SO(3)$? What really rotates and which space it rotates? It cannot be the physical electron that ...
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votes
2answers
1k views

What does a $SU(2)$ doublet really mean?

What do we really mean when we say that the neutron and proton wavefunctions together form an $SU(2)$ doublet? What is the significance of this? What does this transformation really doing to the ...
2
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0answers
76 views

Interesting identity on $SU(3)$

In arXiv:hep-ph/1307.5414 Grabovsky use an interesting identity which is not derived in the paper: ...
3
votes
1answer
103 views

Determining the group associated with a given potential?

I'm trying to understand how symmetry groups are related to potentials of the Schrodinger equation. In particular, I wish to know if it is possible to find the symmetry group of this potential $$V(x) ...
25
votes
3answers
1k views

Idea of Covering Group

$SU(2)$ is the covering group of $SO(3)$. What does it mean and does it have a physical consequence? I heard that this fact is related to the description of bosons and fermions. But how does it ...
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0answers
74 views

Information about fields and superfields [closed]

I want some explanation of fields and superfields (types and components), and what the relationship between them and representation of a group.
2
votes
2answers
450 views

Why does a Lorentz scalar field transform as $U^{-1}(\Lambda)\phi(x)U(\Lambda) = \phi(\Lambda^{-1}x)$?

This problem is from Srednicki page 19. Why $U^{-1}(\Lambda)\phi(x)U(\Lambda) = \phi(\Lambda^{-1}x)$? Can anyone derive this? $\phi$ is a scalar and $\Lambda$ Lorentz transformation.
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votes
2answers
185 views

Why is $U(\Lambda)^{-1} = U(\Lambda^{-1})$ for a unitary representation?

This is from the beginning of Srednicki's QFT textbook, where he writes (approximately): In QM we associate a unitary operator $U(\Lambda)$ to each proper orthochronous Lorentz transformation ...
3
votes
1answer
149 views

Group analysis forbids band-crossing in 1D?

Group analysis forbids band-crossing in 1D in terms of conventional band theory. I read this in a good solid state physics book. But there's no explanation at all. Can anyone help on this?
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vote
3answers
457 views

Difference between $SU(2)$ and $SU(2)$ gauge transformations?

I hear this jargon all the time, so what is the difference? (Of course this is nothing special to $SU(2)$, but rather I just took it as an example)
6
votes
1answer
115 views

In which field theories with fermions do string- and fivebrane structures not come up?

A year ago, username @Greg Graviton asked in a thread here about the Spin group as covering of the spatial rotations. A subquestion was: What other groups, even larger than SU(2) are there that ...
2
votes
1answer
394 views

Why do we use the complexification of the Lorentz group?

I do understand why we are using the double cover, but why exactly do we make the transition to complex Lorentz transformations? Where and why are they needed? To be precise: The double cover of ...
3
votes
1answer
110 views

Is it possible to Vectorialize Quantum Field Theories?

If I take the rules for classical electrodynamics in the covariant formulation (the closest to QFT), I have a tensor that describes the field, $F_{\mu\nu}$. Now we know that we can take some of the ...
3
votes
1answer
331 views

Is the spin-rotation symmetry of Kitaev model $D_2$ or $Q_8$?

It is known that the Kitaev Hamiltonian and its spin-liquid ground state both break the $SU(2)$ spin-rotation symmetry. So what's the spin-rotation-symmetry group for the Kitaev model? It's obvious ...
1
vote
1answer
321 views

Is the spin 1/2 rotation matrix taken to be counterclockwise?

The spin 1/2 rotation matrix around the $z$-axis I worked out to be $$ e^{i\theta S_z}=\begin{pmatrix} \exp\frac{i\theta}{2}&0\\ 0&\exp\frac{-i\theta}{2}\\ \end{pmatrix} $$ Is this taken to ...
2
votes
1answer
394 views

Lorentz group representation and transformation of “vectors”

Let $P$ be the parity operator of the Lorentz group, $$P=\begin{pmatrix}1&0&0&0\\0&-1&0&0\\0&0&-1&0\\0&0&0&-1\end{pmatrix}$$ the commutation relations ...
9
votes
2answers
773 views

How can one see that the Hydrogen atom has $SO(4)$ symmetry?

For solving hydrogen atom energy level by $SO(4)$ symmetry, where does the symmetry come from? How can one see it directly from the Hamiltonian?
12
votes
2answers
955 views

How to prove $(\gamma^\mu)^\dagger=\gamma^0\gamma^\mu\gamma^0$?

Studying the basics of spin-$\frac{1}{2}$ QFT, I encountered the gamma matrices. One important property is $(\gamma^5)^\dagger=\gamma^5$, the hermicity of $\gamma^5$. After some searching, I stumbled ...
7
votes
1answer
328 views

A Puzzle about $SO(3)$

Lie algebra of nonabelian group is $[T^a,T^b]=if^{abc}T^c$. For $SO(3)$ case, is the representation $T^a_{ij}=-i\epsilon^{aij}$ fundamental or adjoint? The fundamental representation is defined as ...
13
votes
3answers
748 views

$\mathrm{SU(3)}$ decomposition of $\mathbf{3} \otimes \mathbf{\bar{3}} = \mathbf{8} \oplus \mathbf{1}$?

I have a question about the tensor decomposition of $\mathrm{SU(3)}$. According to Georgi (page 142 and 143), a tensor $T^i{}_j$ decomposes as: \begin{equation} \mathbf{3} \otimes \mathbf{\bar{3}} = ...
6
votes
0answers
175 views

explicit matrix elements for a representation decomposed into subgroup by branching rules

I'm looking for a way to construct a representation for a simple Lie group such that one particular subgroup is manifest. I learned the branching rules from Cahn, Georgi and Slansky, but I'm still not ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

Infinitesimal Lorentz transformation is antisymmetric

The Minkowski metric transforms under Lorentz transformations as \begin{align*}\eta_{\rho\sigma} = \eta_{\mu\nu}\Lambda^\mu_{\ \ \ \rho} \Lambda^\nu_{\ \ \ \sigma} \end{align*} I want to show that ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

Why does adjoint representation matter in some field theories?

Recently I am reading a paper about monopoles. In several cases, it seems that writing fields in adjoint representation of the gauge group makes a difference. Once it leads to different group after ...
4
votes
1answer
508 views

Is the symmetry group of two spin 1/2 particles $SU(2) \times SU(2)$ or $SU(4)$?

This is a simple question. Please forgive me, as I am a lowly experimentalist. Suppose we have two free spin 1/2 particles, i.e. a 4-fold degenerate system. What is the set of symmetry operations ...
2
votes
1answer
656 views

What exactly means “is a singlet under $SU(N)$” [duplicate]

I don't get a grip of what that exactly means. What IS an abstract singlet, doublet,... under $SU(N)$ or other groups?
3
votes
2answers
299 views

Under which representation of U(1) transform electron and photon gauge field?

I know that under $SU(2) \times SU(2)$, the left-handed electron transforms under $ ( \frac{1}{2},0 ) $ representation and the vector gauge field $A_\mu$ under $ ( \frac{1}{2},\frac{1}{2}) $. Since ...
5
votes
0answers
234 views

Fields with SO(3) diagonal subgroup symmetry

I read about a Higgs field $\vec{\phi}=\frac{1}{2}a\hat{r}\cdot \vec{\sigma}$ (in the context of 't Hooft-Polyakov monopole) with SO(3) diagonal subgroup symmetry consisting of simultaneous and equal ...
4
votes
1answer
130 views

Spinor representation restricted under subgroup, a formula from Polchinski

The question is about the spinor representation decomposed under subgroups. It's a common technique in string theory when parts of dimensions are compactified and ignored, and we are only interested ...
9
votes
1answer
412 views

Why does the eightfold way work?

Last year I attended an introductory particle physics course, in which the Eigthfold Way for classifying hadrons has been discussed. The main idea consists in grouping hadrons in multiplets (i.e ...
3
votes
1answer
553 views

Noether First and Second Theorem

I have this question related to the the Noether's Theorems. I want to know a rigorous enough enunciation of this theorem, the context is Classical Field Theory without fancy geometrical structures ...
4
votes
1answer
249 views

Question about the Killing form in Georgi

I'm trying to understand the Killing form described on page 49 in the book by Howard Georgi. He starts by saying that one defines the inner product between two generators $T_a$ and $T_b$ in the ...
8
votes
1answer
266 views

Rank of the Poincare group

There are two Casimirs of the Poincare group: $$ C_1 = P^\mu P_\mu, \quad C_2 = W^\mu W_\mu $$ with the Pauli-Lubanski vector $W_\mu$. This implies the Poincare group has rank 2. Is there a way to ...
3
votes
1answer
339 views

What does it mean for a Hamiltonian to be SU(2) invariant?

Can somebody explain what it means when one says a Hamiltonian is SU(2) invariant? I know Heisenberg Hamiltonian is SU(2) invariant but why?
2
votes
3answers
170 views

What does “transform among themselves” mean?

I'm reading a script on atomic physics, and there's a chapter on irreducible tensors. I can't understand the meaning of "transform among themselves" in this context: An arbitrary rotation of the ...
1
vote
0answers
96 views

Finding parity eigenvalues from a character table

The all-electron code Wien2K will optionally calculate the character tables for a specified list of $k$-points. I'd like to know the parity eigenvalue for a given $k$-point and band index. Is there ...
1
vote
1answer
311 views

$t_1$, $t_2$, $t_3$ Hermitian generators of $SU(2)$

What is the exact $SU(2)$ representation to which these Hermitian generators belong? \begin{equation} t_a=\{t_1,t_2,t_3\}=\left\{\frac{1}{\sqrt{2}}\begin{pmatrix} 0 & 1 & 0 \\ 1 & 0 & ...
2
votes
1answer
233 views

Does the low-energy gauge structure depend on the choice of $SU(2)$ gauge freedom?

The starting point and notations used here are presented in Two puzzles on the Projective Symmetry Group(PSG)?. As we know, Invariant Gauge Group(IGG) is a normal subgroup of Projective Symmetry ...
1
vote
2answers
331 views

A proof in Howard Georgi's “Lie Algebras in Particle Physics”

I am reading the book referenced above and in the first chapter, in the proof of theorem 1.3 (fifth line of the proof), it says: But because D2 is irreducible, P must project onto the whole space ...
2
votes
2answers
462 views

Symmetries & Lie groups in physics

This is not a homework, neither it is any exercise. It is my understanding of $U(1)$ symmetry. I would request if anybody can please correct me on any one of the following understandings: The ...
1
vote
1answer
596 views

How to get Gell-Mann matrices?

How to get Gell-Mann matrices $f_{i}$ (more or less strictly)? What are the requirements for getting them, excluding $||f_{i}|| = 1$, commutational law $[f_{i}, f_{j}] = if_{ijk}f_{k}$ and hermitian ...
0
votes
1answer
190 views

Symmetry groups [closed]

I am quite new to this subject. I am just repeating in a few words, what I have learned so far: There are 4 fundamental forces of nature: strong, weak, electromagnetism and gravity. Physicists are ...
8
votes
4answers
381 views

What does “carry a representation” mean (in SUSY algebra)?

I come from a maths background and am struggling with some of the more physical texts on SUSY. In particular they claim that the fermionic generators $Q_A^i$ carry a representation of the Lorentz ...