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10
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4answers
3k views

What is the difference between a spinor and a vector or a tensor?

Why do we call a 1/2 spin particle satisfying the Dirac equation a spinor, and not a vector or a tensor?
12
votes
2answers
696 views

Introduction to spinors in physics, and their relation to representations

First, I shall say that I am familiar with the intuitive idea that a spinor is like a vector (or tensor) that only transforms "up to a sign" when acted on by the rotation group. I have even rotated a ...
14
votes
2answers
787 views

What's the relationship between $SL(2,\mathbb{C})$, $SU(2)\times SU(2)$ and $SO(1,3)$?

I'm a beginner of QFT. Ref. 1 states that [...] The Lorentz group $SO(1,3)$ is then essentially $SU(2)\times SU(2)$. But how is it possible, because $SU(2)\times SU(2)$ is a compact Lie group ...
6
votes
3answers
428 views

Is there any relationship between gauge field and spin connection?

For a spinor on curved spacetime, $D_\mu$ is the covariant derivative for fermionic fields is $$D_\mu = \partial_\mu - \frac{i}{4} \omega_{\mu}^{ab} \sigma_{ab}$$ where $\omega_\mu^{ab}$ are the spin ...
3
votes
1answer
329 views

Twistor notation in space-time (Part 1)

This is sort of a continuation of this and this previous discussions. In the first of my links one sees the surjective isometry between real or complex $(1,3)$ signature Minkowski space and the real ...
6
votes
2answers
198 views

Is a spinor in some sense connected to space?

Spinors transform under the representation of $SL(2,\mathbb{C})$ which is the double cover of the Lorentz group $SO(1,3)$ - or in the non-relativistic case under $SU(2)$, the double cover of $SO(3)$. ...
2
votes
2answers
196 views

A whole lot of doubts on Lorentz representation

Can someone tell me in layman's language how the $(1/2,1/2)$ represents a vector field and $(0,1/2)$ or $(1/2,0)$ represents spinors and $(0,0)$ represents scalar field. Please don't be pedantic on ...
11
votes
1answer
908 views

What're the relations and differences between slave-fermion and slave-boson formalism?

As we know, in condensed matter theory, especially in dealing with strongly correlated systems, physicists have constructed various "peculiar" slave-fermion and slave-boson theories. For example, For ...
6
votes
1answer
335 views

Does the concept of both helicity and chirality make sense for a massive Dirac spinor?

Does the concept of both helicity and chirality make sense for a massive Dirac spinor? A massive electron in the chiral basis is written as a column made up of $\psi_L$ and $\psi_R$. What is the ...
12
votes
1answer
716 views

Could this model have soliton solutions?

We consider a theory described by the Lagrangian, $$\mathcal{L}=i\bar{\Psi}\gamma^\mu\partial_\mu\Psi-m\bar{\Psi}\Psi+\frac{1}{2}g(\bar{\Psi}\Psi)^2$$ The corresponding field equations are, ...
7
votes
1answer
236 views

2 Component Spinor Formalism

In Chapters 34-36 of the Srednicki QFT book, 2 component spinors and their combinations in Dirac and Majorana spinors are carefully constructed. Specifically, in equations 36.14 and 36.15 the ...
3
votes
0answers
90 views

Transformation law for spinor functions multiplication

Let's have Dirac spinor $\Psi (x)$, which formally corresponds to $$ \left( 0, \frac{1}{2} \right) \oplus \left( \frac{1}{2}, 0 \right) $$ representation of the Lorentz group. What representation is ...
5
votes
2answers
609 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 ...
3
votes
0answers
68 views

Substitution $\partial_\mu \to D_\mu \equiv \partial_\mu + ieA_\mu$ allows the introduction of electromagnetic interactions [closed]

I want to show that the substitution $\partial_u \to D_\mu \equiv \partial_\mu + ieA_\mu$, or equivalently $p_\mu \to p_\mu - eA_\mu$ allows the introduction of electromagnetic interactions. Here $e$ ...
2
votes
1answer
79 views

How does the Lorentz group act on a 4-vector in the spinor-helicity formalism $p_{\alpha\dot{\alpha}}$?

Given a 4-vector $p^\mu$ the Lorentz group acts on it in the vector representation: $$ \tag{1} p^\mu \longrightarrow (J_V[\Lambda])^\mu_{\,\,\nu} p^\nu\equiv \Lambda^\mu_{\,\,\nu} p^\nu. $$ However, I ...
4
votes
3answers
851 views

Difference between spinor and vector field [duplicate]

How do we distinguish spinors and vector fields? I want to know it in terms of physics with mathematical argument.
3
votes
1answer
148 views

What is a spinor?

In a youtube video, sir Michael Atiyah mentioned that even after working during the most of his life on spinors, he doesn't know what a spinor is. Now surely that was part of his humorous introduction ...
3
votes
0answers
174 views

Some more questions on conformal spinors of $SO(n,2)$

This is somewhat of a continuation of my previous question. I had stated there that a conformal spinor ($V$) of $SO(n,2)$ can be created by taking a direct sum of two $SO(n-1,1)$ spinors $Q$ and $S$ ...
1
vote
3answers
2k views

Energy Spectrum of pair of spin-1/2 particles with general Hamiltonian

I found this problem, and so far I am stumped. I was wondering if anyone wanted to solve it with me, or help me calculate eigenvectors, or just give insight on my questions. Consider a system of ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

Dirac, Weyl and Majorana Spinors

To get to the point - what's the defining differences between them? Alas, my current understanding of a spinor is limited. All I know is that they are used to describe fermions (?), but I'm not sure ...
3
votes
1answer
154 views

The relationship between spin and spinor curvature

The identity, $$ -\gamma^b{\mathcal{R}}_{ab} = {\mathcal{R}}_{ab}\gamma^b = \frac{1}{2}\gamma^b R_{ab}$$ is presented in the answer to the question Dirac Equation in General Relativity. How does ...
3
votes
1answer
213 views

Lorentz spinors of $SO(n,1)$ and conformal spinors of $SO(n,2)$

It would be great if someone can give me a reference (short enough!) which explains the (spinor) representation theory of the groups $SO(n,1)$ and $SO(n,2)$. I have searched through a few standard ...
2
votes
4answers
228 views

Nature of Fields in QFT

I'm not exactly an expert in quantum physics, but this seems to be a simple question, and I can't find an answer anywhere! There are specific types of fields used in physics: scalar fields (i.e. as ...
2
votes
2answers
535 views

Two ways to form SU(2) singlets?

I am trying to reconcile the two ways of forming SU(2) singlets out of a pair of doublets. Method (1): If $v=\begin{pmatrix}v^1\\ v^2\end{pmatrix}$ and $w=\begin{pmatrix}w^1\\ w^2\end{pmatrix}$ are ...
1
vote
1answer
350 views

How to find the time evolution for two-component spinor? [closed]

I would like to find the time evolution for the given Hamiltonian, the initial state of the system we choose two spinor wavefunction $\psi_{+}(t=0)$ and $\psi_{-}(t=0)$ as given below: The effective ...
0
votes
0answers
67 views

Lorentz transformations of spinors in $SL(2,\mathbb{C})$

I was wondering what the matrix representations of all the coordinate rotations and Lorentz boosts of the $SL(2,\mathbb{C})$ were along with a general method of solving for them. I've been able to do ...
4
votes
1answer
424 views

Components of the Weyl spinor field

In the Weyl basis we can separate the spinor field into 2 components: the right-chiral spinor and the left-chiral spinor. Each of these fields has again 2 components which are coupled. What is the ...
3
votes
1answer
210 views

Connection between particles and fields and spinor representation of the Poincare group

Let's have a definition of massive particle as an irreucible representation of the Poincare group. Then, let's have a spinor field $\psi_{\alpha \alpha_{1}...\alpha_{n - 1}\dot {\beta} \dot ...
3
votes
1answer
233 views

How quantum field transforms in case of some particular spin

Except when a particle is spin-0, field of all particles transforms when frame of reference is changed, and this defines what spin is. The question is, specifically how does the quantum field ...
2
votes
3answers
64 views

How do I operate on a spin state with a sigma operator?

For any arbitrary spin state $|s\rangle$. How do I operate on it with the Pauli spin matrix, $\hat{\sigma_z}$? Does this have something to do with a Bloch sphere?
1
vote
1answer
258 views

Spinor formalism in QFT

We can describe fields by two formalisms: vector and spinor. This is the result of possibility of representation of the Lorentz's group irreducible rep as straight cross product of two $SU(2)$ or two ...
0
votes
1answer
151 views

Pauli matrices identities

There are some definitions and properties for Pauli matrices and their combinations: $$ \varepsilon^{\alpha \beta } = \varepsilon^{\dot {\alpha} \dot {\beta} } = \begin{pmatrix} 0 & 1 \\ -1 & ...