Renormalization is an ensemble of techniques which serves to treat the infinities which appear in quantum field theory or statistical mechanics.

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Charge Renormalization and Photon Propagator

I'm trying to understand charge renormalization in QED. I know that one can write the full photon propagator as $$\frac{-i\eta_{\mu\nu}}{q^2(1-\Pi(q^2))}$$ where $\Pi$ is regular at $0$. Obviously ...
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Divergent bare parameters/couplings: what is the physical meaning of it? Do this have any relation with wilson's renormalization group approach?

I understand that bare parameters in the Lagrangian are different from the physical one that you measure in an experiment. I'm wondering if the fact that they are divergent has any physical meaning? ...
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Why are the eigenvalues of a linearized RG transformation real?

The RG transformation $R_\ell$ maps a set of coupling constants $[K]$ of a model Hamiltonian to a new set of coupling constants $[K']=R_\ell[K]$ of a coarse-grained model where the length scale is ...
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Some conceptual questions on the renormalization group

I recently followed courses on QFT and the subject of renormalization was discussed in some detail, largely following Peskin and Schroeder's book. However, the chapter on the renomalization group is ...
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Etymology of “Renormalisation”

Just out of curiosity, does anyone know why "renormalisation" is so named? Who first came up with the term, and why was it used? I did a mathematics undergraduate so to me "normalisation" means ...
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What does it mean to renormalize an effective field theory?

This is in reference to slide 19 of this talk "As always in Effective Field Theory, the theory becomes predictive when there are more observables than parameters" Can one explain what this exactly ...
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Zeta regularization gone bad

This may sound as a mathematical question, but it should be very familiar to physicists. I am trying to perform an expansion of the function $$f(x) = \sum_{n=1}^{\infty} \frac{K_2(nx)}{n^2 x^2},$$ for ...
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Basic question about the S-Matrix, Unitarity and Effective Field Theory

Consider scattering some particles in a state collectively denoted by $i$ to a final state denote by $f$. The scattering amplitude, S-matrix is then defined by: $S_{fi}\equiv \langle f|e^{-iHt}|i\...
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Could motives aid in the study of the Navier-Stokes equations?

Recently, mathematicians and theoretical physicists have been studying Quantum Field Theory (and renormalization in particular) by means of abstract geometrical objects called motives. Amongst these ...
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What is the connection between Conformal Field Theory and Renormalization group in QFT?

As I know, the fundamental concept of QFT is Renormalization Group and RG flow. It is defined by making 2 steps: We introduce cutting-off and then integrating over "fast" fields $\widetilde{\phi}$, ...
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Renormalizing composite operators

Consider the QED Lagrangian, \begin{equation} {\cal L} = \bar{\psi} ^{(0)} ( i \partial_\mu \gamma^\mu - m ) \psi ^{(0)} - e A _\mu ^{(0)} \bar{\psi} ^{(0)} \gamma ^\mu \psi ^{(0)} - \frac{1}{4} ...
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Residues in QFT propagator

It is a well known fact that the location of the pole of a propagator (in QFT) can be interpreted as the physical mass. Is there an interpretation for the residue of the propagator? Note: I´m ...
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Explanation of Cardy's “a theorem”

There seems to have been some discussion of Cardy's "a-theorem" recently: “It is shown that, for d even, the one-point function of the trace of the stress tensor on the sphere, Sd, when suitably ...
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Momentum Space Renormalization of $\phi ^6 $ Model

I'm trying to find the RG flow to lowest order in $\epsilon = 3 -d $ for the energy functional: $$ f=\frac{1}{2} \phi ^2 +u \phi ^6 +\frac{c}{2} (\nabla \phi ) ^2 $$ where $\ d$ is the dimension we'...
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Why does local gauge invariance suggest renormalizability?

I'm reading Gauge Field Theories: An Introduction with Applications by Mike Guidry and this particular remark is not obvious to me: A tempting avenue is suggested by the QED paradigm, for if a ...
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How do fermion and scalar masses run with energy? Is the difference in their running the core of the hierarchy problem?

Do fermion and scalar running masses run in the same way? Specifically, what are the qualitative differences in the mass beta functions for, say, scalar $\lambda\phi^4$ field theory and the fermion ...
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Does the Standard Model have a Landau pole?

I have seen the statement that the Standard Model has a Landau pole, or at least it its believed that it does at $\sim 10^{34}$ GeV. Has this actually been proven (at least in perturbation theory, as ...
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Renormalization of field strength

I'm revisiting the elementary algorithms of renormalization that are taught in a classroom setting and find that the procedure taught to students is as follows: Write down the bare Lagrangian: $\...
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Why would renormalization be necessary without divergent integrals? [duplicate]

Weinberg uses the LSZ reduction formula to introduce field renormalization,and on page 441, he says: As this discussion should make clear: the renormalization of masses and fields has nothing to ...
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Do “typical” QFT's lack a lagrangian description?

Sometimes as a result of learning new things you realize that you are incredibly confused about something you thought you understood very well, and that perhaps your intuition needs to be revised. ...
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How do we know for sure a theory is non-renormalizable?

In quantum field theory, we are looking for a Lagrangian that is, amongst other, renormalizable. But how do we determine whether or not a theory is renormalizable? Is this purely done by power ...
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Dimensional regularization and IR divergences and scale invariance

I want to know if dimensional regularization has any issues if the theory has IR divergences or is scale invariant. Does dimensional regularization see "all" kinds of divergences? I mean - what ...
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Wilsonian vs 1PI

As a follow up to Difference between 1PI effective action and Wilsonian effective action, where can I find pedagogical material that highlights the similarities and differences between the 1PI and ...
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What is IR CFT and UV CFT?

What is IR CFT and UV CFT? In many physics related materials, they often mention IR, and UV. I think it is related with regularization (I remember in QFT, there is UV cutoff in some regularization ...
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In QFT how do you write down the most general interactions?

This past year I took a QFT class and I now feel comfortable solving scattering problems, but I am still a bit perplexed by how physicists write down a Lagrangian in the first place. In particular, ...
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Naturalness arguments and dimensional regularization?

How do issues of naturalness arise when regularizing QFT using dimensional regularization? I can only recall ever seeing naturalness arguments (hierarchy problem, cosmological constant problem, etc.) ...
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No non-trivial UV asymptotically free and IR free

How it could be proven that a non-trivial theory cannot be both asymptotically free and IR free (g=0 both in the UV and IR with some interpolating function in between)? This is of course contrary to ...
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Infinity of running couplings

A Landau pole - an infinity occurring in the running of coupling constants in QFT is a known phenomena. How does the Landau pole energy scale behave if we increase the order of our calculation, (more ...
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Why Zeta regularization is not valid for multiple-loops?

Why zeta regularization only valid at one-loop? I mean there are zeta regularizations for multiple zeta sums. Also we could use the zeta regularization iteratively on each variable to obtain finite ...
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Intuition for parameter $\mu$ in dimensional regularization

In dimensional regularization, a dimensionless coupling $g$ is replaced by $\mu^{4-d}g$ so that it can remain dimensionless. $\mu$ is unphysical, though its choice affects the values of counterterms. ...
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QED coupling constant at one loop

On page 257 in Peskin's QFT book a qualitative sketch of the QED coupling is given (see the picture below). Why should I expect such a behavior from QED? The QED beta function is $$\beta_{qed}=\mu\...
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Physical explanations for renormalization

Some related questions on Renormalization: Why is renormalization even necessary? My understanding is that the supposed problem is that the sums of certain amplitudes end up being infinite. But ...
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Cut-off Regularisation and Renormalisation in Scalar Field Theory, Deriving the Cutoff Independent Physical Mass

I'm having trouble reproducing Equation 42: \begin{equation}\tag{1} m^{2}_{\text{phys}}= m^{2}_{r} + m^{2}_{r} \tilde{\lambda} \text{log} \left( \dfrac{m^{2}_{r}}{\mu^{2}} \right) \end{equation} ...
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Regarding Non-renormalizatibility of GR

I've been doing some reading trying to get to a better understanding of some renormalization issues with the Einstein-Hilbert action. But, something odd came into mind that I'm hoping some users may ...
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Divergent sum in lightcone quantization of bosonic string theory

I had the following question regarding lightcone quantization of bosonic strings - The normal ordering requirement of quantization gives us this infinite sum $\sum_{n=1}^\infty n$. This is regularized ...
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Counterterm Lagrangian and Renormalisation?

I am going through the notes on QFT by M. Srednicki (online: http://web.physics.ucsb.edu/~mark/qft.html), and I am having a hard time to understand the "renormalised" Lagrangian. Consider a Klein-...
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What is meant by the phrase “this operator does not renormalize this other operator”, and how can understand it using diagrammatic arguments?

I am trying to understand some sentences in a paper. In section two the following theory of a (complex) massless scalar coupled to a $U(1)$ gauge boson is introduced $$\cal{L}_4=-|D_{\mu}\phi|^2-\...
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Why holographic renormalization?

Why is there a need to perform holographic renormalization for the normal $AdS_5\times S^5$/CFT$_4$ correspondence if the brane theory is conformal? Since the flow along the AdS direction $r$ is ...
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Mass corrections to fermions proportional to the mass?

In this post regarding quantum corrections to a massless fermion field, the answerer stated that quantum corrections to the mass will always be proportional to the mass (at least in QED). This point ...
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What happens when you apply the path integral to the Einstein-Hilbert action?

The Einstein Field Equations emerge when applying the principle of least action to the Einstein-Hilbert action, and from what I understand the path integral formulation generalizes the principle of ...
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Renormalization and Conway/Surreal Numbers

In the final chapter of his book "An Interpretive Introduction to Quantum Field Theory", Paul Teller writes about three interpretations of renormalization in quantum field theory. In particular, ...
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Protection of the electron mass by chiral symmetry

In many textbooks it is said that mass renormalization of the electron mass is only logarithmic $\delta m \sim m\, log(\Lambda/m)$ because it is protected by the chiral symmetry. I understand that in ...
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Anomalous Dimensions of Gauge Interactions

Peskin and Schroeder mention a few times that the anomalous dimension of a gauge interaction operator is zero. The justification for this is that the charge operator shouldn't get modified under ...
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Renormalizability of the Polyakov Action

I was told today that the Polyakov action for a $p$-brane is (superficially) re-normalizable iff $p\leq 1$. Of course, when I went to check for myself, I screwed up my power-counting, and I'm having ...
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Why is $R^2$ gravity not unitary?

I have often heard that $R^2$ gravity (as studied by Stelle) is renormalisable but not unitary. My question is: what is it that causes the theory to suffer from problems with unitarity? My naive ...
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Are the bare parameters of a renormalizable field theory infinitesimal or infinite?

I think this should be an easy question. Several sources I've read say that the bare parameters in a quantum field theory are "infinite" so that the renormalized values are "finite". However, in ...
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The Euler equations as a RNG fixed point

In this paper at the at the beginning of the last paragraph on p.2 it is said, that the Euler equations, which are an infinite Reynolds number limit of the Navier-Stokes equations, arise as an RNG ...
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In QED/Yang Mills, why do fermions contribute 4 times as much as scalars to vacuum polarization?

Consider a Yang-Mills theory in $4D$ over a gauge group $G$ $$ \mathcal{L} = - \frac{1}{4} F^{a\mu\nu}F_{\mu\nu}^a + \bar \psi i D_\mu \gamma^\mu \psi + (D_\mu \phi)^\dagger D^\mu \phi $$ where $\...
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Understanding the $\phi^4$ phase diagram

I'm having trouble making sense of this phase diagram. The model is a $V(\phi)=g_2 \phi^2+g_4\phi^4$ scalar field theory. Here's what I think I understand: the capital letters represent different ...
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Why don't we have logarithms or exponentials of the fields in the Lagrangians?

All tbe Lagrangian densities I have seen have always been polynomials of the fields. Is this a coincidence or is there a reason forbid, say, Lagrangians with logarithms or exponentials of the fields?