Quantum Field Theory (QFT) is the theoretical framework describing the quantisation of classical fields which allows a Lorentz-invariant formulation of quantum mechanics. QFT is used both in high energy physics as well as condensed matter physics and closely related to statistical field theory. Use ...

learn more… | top users | synonyms (1)

6
votes
1answer
495 views

Generalization of spin coherent states for an arbitrary group?

My question is inspired by the analogy of the Berry phase in the spin coherent state representation of a rotator and the Aharonov-Bohm phase of a magnetic monopole (see e.g., Section 1.8.3 in ...
14
votes
3answers
931 views

Does the Unruh effect violate Mach's principle?

Mach's principle says that it is impossible to tell if something is accelerating unless there is something else in the universe to compare that motion to, which seems reasonable. However, if you had ...
0
votes
1answer
499 views

Spin of an electron [closed]

I have a conceptual difficulty in understanding the electron spin. On the one hand, it is an experimental, observable feature of electrons. The problem is in understanding to what it belongs - to a ...
6
votes
1answer
809 views

Definition and difference between the R-symmetry and the $U(1)_R$ internal symmetry

For a general ${\cal N}$ the R-symmetry group is $U({\cal N})$ but for the ${\cal N}=2$ case why is it $SU(2)$ ? I guess it is again different for ${\cal N}=4$. How does one understand this? One ...
6
votes
3answers
602 views

What are fields?

I'm following my first course in field theory and the professor began, like many books do, by introducing the scalar field. However, I am a bit hesitant about the physical idea of fields. My question ...
3
votes
0answers
448 views

Correlators at large N and large N factorization

I am having this very basic problem. In e.g Maldacena's AdS/CFT review (0309246) (page 5), he has defined operators as $\mathcal{O}=N\,{\rm tr}[f(M)]$ for some matrices $M$ and got the connected ...
15
votes
3answers
910 views

Does renormalization make quantum fields into (slightly) nonlinear functionals of test functions?

Quantum fields are presented as operator-valued distributions, so that the operators in the theory are linear functionals of some test function space. This works well for free fields, giving us a ...
6
votes
6answers
2k views

Why is mass the quadratic term in a Lagrangian?

Why is mass the quadratic term in a Lagrangian?
7
votes
1answer
456 views

BPS sectors in $\cal{N}=4$ SYM

I am familiar with the idea of a BPS bound as in a lower limit on the mass of supermultiplets given by a certain function of the central charge and when I think of $\cal{N}=4$ SYM I see a complicated ...
6
votes
1answer
567 views

Is microcausality *necessary* for no-signaling?

There are proofs in the literature that QFT including microcausality is sufficient for it not to be possible to send signals by making quantum mechanical measurements associated with regions of ...
4
votes
3answers
614 views

Nomenclature: Yang-Mills theory vs Gauge theory

If you're writing about a theory with Yang-Mills/Gauge fields for an arbitrary reductive gauge group coupled to arbitrary matter fields in some representation, is it best to call it a Yang-Mills ...
6
votes
2answers
245 views

Does the lack of modular nuclearity in string theory mean anything?

Nuclearity is a postulate in algebraic quantum field theory (AQFT). Basically, it says thermal states at any temperature always have a thermodynamic limit with extensive quantities. This is violated ...
3
votes
1answer
457 views

The superconformal algebra

How does one derive the superconformal algebra? Especialy how to argue the existence of the operator $S$ which doesn't exist either in either the supersymmetric algebra or the conformal algebra? ...
5
votes
1answer
1k views

Some questions on Conformal Field Theory, Current algebras and the Sugawara construction

Since I don't know how to add another question to an already existing topic, I'm opening a new thread. However I'm referring to: Beginners questions concerning Conformal Field Theory As noted, a ...
9
votes
6answers
8k views

What is a complete book for quantum field theory?

I am searching for a complete and comprehensive book for QFT. What is, in your opinion, a good one?
-3
votes
4answers
951 views

Who works professionally on reformulation of QFT?

P. Dirac was worried with the infinities and their discarding in QED. He wanted us to reformulate the theory in order to eliminate infinities and renormalizations from the very beginning. Is there ...
11
votes
1answer
451 views

An unfamiliar way of writing supersymmetry transformations

This question is in relation to this recent paper. I would like to know how the so called supersymmetry transformations at the start of page 27 or at the end of page35 (equation 8.4) or at the end ...
9
votes
1answer
700 views

CFT and the Coleman-Mandula Theorem

The Coleman-Mandula theorem states that under certain seemingly-mild assumptions on the properties of the S matrix (roughly: one particle states are left invariant and the amplitudes are analytic in ...
3
votes
2answers
547 views

What is a “classical Schrodinger field”, really?

I have read through the wikipedia page and several lecture notes/arxiv papers from my google search (and several related P.SE questions), but I'm still hopelessly confused. Consider a 'classical ...
12
votes
3answers
2k views

Beginners questions concerning Conformal Field Theory

I started reading about Conformal Field Theory a few weeks ago. I'm from a more mathematical background. I do know Quantum Mechanics/Classical Mechanics, but I'm not really an expert when it comes ...
4
votes
1answer
673 views

Why is GR ghost-free?

I wonder how one can show that general relativity is ghost-free? By ghost I mean the negative norm state that breaks the unitarity. I think it is a well-known "fact" but I just couldn't find any ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

What does “soft” in “soft symmetry breaking” mean?

For example it is stated that if supersymmetry breaking is soft then stability of gauge hierarchy can be still maintained.
3
votes
1answer
79 views

Experimental limits on anisotropies in the $e/m_{e}$ ratio

Currently the charge-to-mass ratio of the electron is known to 10 orders of magnitude. However, i'm curious if: Are there any experiments trying to bound the anisotropy of this ratio for different ...
8
votes
1answer
308 views

Weakly gauge a symmetry?

What does it mean to "weakly gauge" a global symmetry in a gauge theory? I have seen this term used in a number of papers, but have not seen it defined.
4
votes
1answer
456 views

Katz and Vafa's work on F-theory

I would like to know about the larger picture, current state and future prospects of the sequence of papers that were written by Sheldon Katz and Cumrun Vafa on F-theory. (Freddy Cachazo was also a ...
4
votes
3answers
505 views

Particle Lagrangians

As I learned in my string theory course, you can describe the quantum spin-0 particle by quantizing the arclength Lagrangian of a relativistic classical particle. My question is whether you can get a ...
7
votes
3answers
485 views

Horizon and Unruh radiation for a finite period of acceleration

It's a well known fact that an observer that accelerates at a constant rate from $-c$ at past infinity to $+c$ at future infinity sees a horizon in flat Minkowski spacetime. This is easy to see from a ...
10
votes
5answers
4k views

Chemical potential

This is something probably very basic but I was led back to this issue while listening to a recent seminar by Allan Adams on holographic superconductors. He seemed very worried to have a theory at ...
15
votes
3answers
1k views

No hair theorem for black holes and the baryon number

The no hair theorem says that a black hole can be characterized by a small number of parameters that are visible from distance - mass, angular momentum and electric charge. For me it is puzzling why ...
4
votes
3answers
960 views

Is contextuality required in quantum mechanics?

I still don't really understand what contextuality means in reference to quantum mechanics. If someone could give a clear definition that would be great. It sounds like it means you can't always ...
8
votes
1answer
455 views

Is there a rest frame for the Higgs boson?

If there is a non-zero expectation value for the Higgs boson even in "vacuum", since the Higgs boson has a mass unlike photons, then I would expect it to have a rest frame. So why doesn't a non-zero ...
2
votes
1answer
291 views

A particular notation about fermions

I am not sure that this notation is specific to supersymmetry theories but I ran into this while studying that. I see people talking of component fields of a chiral superfield as $\phi$ and ...
3
votes
1answer
316 views

running of coupling constant as a function of distance?

There are many papers about the running of coupling strength as a function of momentum/energy scale, but are there any experimental papers about coupling strength as function of distance? Also, are ...
4
votes
2answers
228 views

Constructing the $\cal{N}=2$ supersymmetric non-Abelian Chern-Simon's theory

This is related to this earlier question I had asked. I am using the so called ``Majorana" representation of gamma matrices in $2+1$ dimensions in which everything is real. After doing the ...
3
votes
1answer
238 views

Density/distribution of Eigenvalues

In various articles (I am here talking about specially the ones related to string theory etc.) I have seen the discussion on density and distribution of eigenvalues. I want to know why do we use them ...
12
votes
1answer
2k views

What is Euler Density?

Can someone please explain to me what Euler Density is? I have encountered it in Weyl anomaly related issues in various articles. Most of them assumes that its familiar, but I couldn't find any ...
12
votes
1answer
906 views

dynamic casimir effect

A few years ago, when i studied the casimir effect interpretation as the filtering out of vacuum modes with appropiate boundary conditions, i had the following dilemma; supposedly the derivation of ...
33
votes
9answers
4k views

Rigor in quantum field theory

Quantum field theory is a broad subject and has the reputation of using methods which are mathematically desiring. For example working with and subtracting infinities or the use of path integrals, ...
5
votes
1answer
334 views

Construction of the $\cal{N}=3$ supersymmetric Yang-Mills Chern-Simons theory in $2+1$ dimensions

I am stuck with understanding the following construction. I am breaking it up into segments which I think can be separately answered. This is related to an earlier question of mine. Note that this ...
3
votes
3answers
682 views

Snell's law starting from qft? [duplicate]

Can one "interpret" Snell's law in terms of QED and the photon picture? How would one justifiy this interpretation with some degree of mathematical rigour? At the end I would like to have a direct ...
2
votes
1answer
295 views

Axion related questions

I have several question regarding axion. Could anyone give me some brief introduction to what is a axion string, axion field and how is this related to fermion zero mode and chiral zero mode?
8
votes
1answer
2k views

How does one prove Fierz identities?

Fierz identities are discussed in the wikipedia article: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fierz_identity but the article doesn't give any derivation. The article implies that they arise from the blade ...
17
votes
3answers
1k views

Why does dilation invariance often imply proper conformal invariance?

Why does a quantum field theory invariant under dilations almost always also have to be invariant under proper conformal transformations? To show your favorite dilatation invariant theory is also ...
4
votes
2answers
671 views

Higgs Boson Mass

The WIKI Higgs boson site has an interesting diagram illustrating likely Higgs mass intervals that experiments (LEP & Tevatron) or indirect measurements have determined with a 95% confidence ...
2
votes
0answers
385 views

An alternative, algebraic way to introduce interactions. Are there other ways out there?

An opening paragraph: The usual approach to introducing interactions in quantum field theory is to make the constraint on the amplitude of the field towards smaller values more forceful than ...
9
votes
2answers
525 views

Some Majorana fermion identities

I have been struggling with these Majorana fermion identities for quite sometime now. I would be grateful if someone can help me with them. Let $\lambda$,$\theta$ and $\psi$ be $4$-component ...
7
votes
2answers
230 views

Is there a meaning to the E,B analogues of other gauge fields?

From the gauge field $A_\mu$ and the QED lagrangian we can derive maxwell's equations in terms of electric and magnetic fields. Are there any situations where similar derivations using the other gauge ...
4
votes
1answer
773 views

Dimensional reduction from $3+1$ to $2+1$ for $\cal{N}=2$ vector superfield

Let the supersymmetry transformations for the chiral multiplet $(z_k,\psi_{kL},f_k)$ be, $\delta z_k = 2i \bar{\alpha} \psi_{kL}$ $\delta \psi_{kL} = D_\mu z_k \gamma ^\mu \alpha_R + f_k \alpha_L$ ...
0
votes
1answer
393 views

What is the spectral energy density of virtual photons around a unit charge at rest?

Given that my previous question, namely "What is the number density of virtual photons around a unit charge?" has no precise answer, here is a more precise wording: What is the virtual photon ...
7
votes
1answer
338 views

How do ideas of leading singularities and Grassmanian help in curing infrared divergences when calculating N=4 scattering amplitudes?

Broadly speaking how do ideas of leading singularities and Grassmanian help in curing infrared divergences when calculating N=4 scattering amplitudes? My understanding is that one gets infra red ...