A class of theories that attempt to explain all existing particles (including force carriers) as vibrational modes of extended objects, such as the 1-dimensional fundamental string. PLEASE DO NOT USE THIS TAG for non-relativistic material strings, such as, e.g., a guitar string.

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277 views

Gregory-Laflamme Instability of Black Strings and $p$-Branes

In a paper by Gregory and Laflamme (http://arxiv.org/abs/hep-th/9301052) in 1993, it was demonstrated that black strings and $p$-branes which were solutions to certain low energy string theories were ...
3
votes
1answer
71 views

Renormalization of worldsheet energy-momentum tensor

At the end of section 2.3, Polchinski (in his volume 1) derives the energy-momentum tensor for free massless scalars on worldsheet. He adds a footnote that "the only possible ambiguity introduced by ...
8
votes
2answers
263 views

Do exact beta functions exist in (super)gravity theories and string theory?

An exact beta function exists for Super-Yang-Mills theories in 4D without matter - the so-called NSVZ beta function. Does a similar exact beta-function exist in gravity or supergravity theories? In ...
11
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4answers
4k views

Is spacetime discrete or continuous?

Is the spacetime continuous or discrete? Or better, is the 4-dimensional spacetime of general-relativity discrete or continuous? What if we consider additional dimensions like string theory ...
5
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3answers
275 views

Extending General Relativity with Kahler Manifolds?

Standard general relativity is based on Riemannian manifolds. However, the simplest extension of Riemannian manifolds seems to be Kahler manifolds, which have a complex (hermitian) structure, a ...
13
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1answer
271 views

Self-dual Maxwell equations, the second homology group, and topological invariants of a four manifold

In Witten's paper Quantum Field Theory and the Jones Polynomial, he mentioned that: Geometers have long known that (via de Rham theory) the self-dual and anti-self-dual Maxwell equations are ...
4
votes
1answer
103 views

AdS3 soliton of Witten - for Hawking-Page transition

Are there explicit AdS$_3$ soliton solution? in the sense of Witten's Anti De Sitter Space And Holography and Hawking-page transition paper, by doing a $$\tau_E, y ,r \to y, \tau_E ,r$$ from ...
16
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2answers
499 views

S-Matrix in $\mathcal{N}=4$ Super-Yang Mills

This is a general question, but what is meant when people refer to the S-Matrix of $\mathcal{N}=4$ Super Yang Mills? The way I understood it is the S-Matrix is only well defined for theories with a ...
4
votes
1answer
108 views

Gravitational Chern-Simons theory for bosons and fermions

Q1: What is the difference of boson and fermions for their Gravitational Chern-Simons theory? I suppose in general if the metric is not flat, we have vierbein ${e_{\hat{b}}}^{\nu}$, with $$ ...
6
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1answer
81 views

Quantized coefficients of Chern-Simons action and F $\wedge$ F $\wedge \dots$

We know that for U(1) gauge field Chern-Simons action in 2+1 Dim(ension), we have an action $$ S=\alpha \int A \wedge dA $$ with $\alpha=k/(4\pi)$ for a proper level quantization. Here $k$ is the ...
0
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3answers
139 views

Is Space-Time a special form of energy?

I know space-time can be influenced by matter and energy, so it must be somehow mingled in with the mix of it all, but does space-time have a fundamental particle? Can we make a little bit of ...
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2answers
1k views

Is anti-gravity possible in theoretical physics?

Is anti-gravity possible in string theory? I have read some articles about scientists making assumptions about the existence of anti-gravity, but is it possible in string theory?
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2answers
266 views

Operator Product Expansion (OPE) in Conformal Field Theory

We denote local operators of a conformal field theory (CFT) as $\mathcal{O}_i$ where $i$ runs over the set of all operators. Formally, the operator product expansion (OPE) is given by, ...
6
votes
1answer
241 views

Topological ground state degeneracy of SU(N), SO(N), Sp(N) Chern-Simons theory

We know that level-k Abelian 2+1D Chern-Simons theory on the $T^2$ spatial torus gives ground state degeneracy($GSD$): $$GSD=k$$ How about $GSD$ on $T^2$ spatial torus of: SU(N)$_k$ level-k ...
2
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0answers
61 views

Is the cross section of a relativistic water hose or string always a perfect circle?

Given is a very long tube, such as a water hose or a tubular string with finite thickness, that has a constant circular cross section of radius $r$ along the length and that is at rest in an inertial ...
5
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0answers
176 views

Is string theory over a time varying background a conformal field theory to all orders in perturbation theory?

When computing the first order perturbative corrections to string theory over a curved background, we find the background has to be Ricci-flat if the dilaton is constant and we have no fluxes. Such is ...
4
votes
1answer
121 views

Which is the role of Algebraic Geometry in String Theory? [closed]

Could someone sketch me what algebraic geometry has to do with string theory? Are there other mathematical disciplines that are interwoven with string theory? I'm aware of a similar question on ...
2
votes
1answer
78 views

Number of zero-modes on the sphere

Is it true that a field of conformal dimension $h$ (integer or half integer) has $1-2h$ zero-modes on the sphere, if $1-2h \geq0$. This seems to be right for different ghost fields : $c$ has ...
5
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2answers
124 views

Vertex operator - state mapping in Polchinski's book

In Polchinski's textbook String Theory, section 2.8, the author argues that the unit operator $1$ corresponds to the vacuum state, and $\partial X^\mu$ is holomorphic inside couture $Q$ in figure ...
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0answers
31 views

Can the length of the closed string larger?

Can the length of the closed strings becomes larger than the plank length ? With that , does the string describe the higgs particles ?
3
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0answers
90 views

String theory and space-time supersymmetry

I actually want to know whether space-time supersymmetry is important for string theory consistency? I see that NS and GS supersymmetric strings have worldsheet supersymmetry, but the first one does ...
3
votes
1answer
96 views

Zwiebach scalar product notation

I am currently working through Zwiebach's a First Course in String Theory. He seems to use dot-product notation interchangeably with the "down-up" notation. For example, on pg 176/section 9.1, he ...
2
votes
1answer
158 views

Spin connection in higher dimension

I have a problem regarding computation of spin connection in the case where One or more dimension is compactified. For example if we take a $D+1$ dimensional bosonic string action and write the $D+1$ ...
6
votes
0answers
174 views

Toda equations and surface operator

I would like to know the reason why the equation (14) in the paper by Yamada is called the Toda equation. \begin{equation} \left[\frac12\sum_{i=1}^N\left(y_i\frac{\partial}{\partial ...
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vote
0answers
21 views

Open string amplitude with higher vertices

In Polchinski's String Theory, section 6.2, the tree level amplitude for open strings with higuer vertices are given (6.2.18-20). The amplitude $<\prod_i[e^{ik_i\cdot X(z_i,\bar ...
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vote
3answers
2k views

Relation between quarks and strings

In string theory(s), are quarks just individual strings, or are they made of multiple strings? Are the heavier quarks made of heavier or longer strings? Are there red, blue, and green strings ...
4
votes
1answer
255 views

What does it mean to “wrap” a D-brane around some manifold?

I am getting quite confused with this terminology when I read the papers. Like while constructing the near horizon $AdS_3$ in the $D1-D5$ system one considers $IIB$ on $R^{1,4}\times M^4 \times S^1$ ...
3
votes
1answer
202 views

Deriving the transformation under Weyl rescaling in Polchinski eq. (1.2.31)

I have another question in Polchinski's string theory book volume 1, namely how to derive Eq. (1.2.32)? $$(-\gamma')^{1/2} R'=(-\gamma)^{1/2} (R-2 \nabla^2 \omega) \tag{1.2.32}$$ I have awared his ...
2
votes
0answers
49 views

String Vertex Operators in Light Cone Gauge

I have a basic confusion about how to compute string scattering amplitudes in light cone gauge, using the operator formalism reviewed in GSW. I am familiar with the covariant gauge formalism, where I ...
1
vote
0answers
53 views

Is it possible to define a notion of temperature in a microcanonical ensemble?

I am thinking of a mircrocanonical ensemble as a finite system for which the number of particles, volume and the total energy is fixed. Is there a more refined view of this? Can I think of ...
2
votes
0answers
58 views

Relation between holography and matrix models

Let's consider a 0-dimensional $N \times N$ Hermitean one matrix model. It is defined by a potential V(M). Its partition function is $Z = \int_{H_{N}} dM e^{-\frac{1}{g}V(M)}$ where $H_{N}$ is the ...
0
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1answer
40 views

Concerning Electrogravitics in an inertial frame

Listening to Feynman, He pointed out the fact that if a magnet is in an inertial frame with respect to a coil, there can be no electromotive force and hence no electricity produced. It is only when ...
8
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239 views

p-Adic String Theory and the String-orientation of Topological Modular Forms (tmf)

I am going to ask a question, at the end below, on whether anyone has tried to make more explicit what should be a close relation between p-adic string theory and the refinement of the superstring ...
4
votes
1answer
104 views

Allowed interactions in bosonic string theory

In a quantum field theory, only a finite set of interactions are allowed, determined by the Lagrangian of the theory which specifies the interaction vertex Feynman rules. In string theory, an ...
7
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1answer
75 views

Connection beween infinite gauge symmetries and UV finiteness

In e.g., http://arxiv.org/abs/arXiv:0712.3526 the author claims: Since the massless higher-spin field theories involve infinite-dimensional gauge symmetries, one expects that such theories may be ...
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0answers
35 views

Book suggestion for Theoretical Physics with easy maths [duplicate]

I am a Computer Scientist with literature interest in theoretical physics. I have already read books such as A Brief History of Time and Physics of the Impossible, and I am looking for suggestion for ...
6
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0answers
120 views

Which values of the Riemann zeta funtion at negative arguments come up in physics?

For my bachelor's thesis, I am investigating Divergent Series. Apart from the mathematical theory behind them (which I find fascinating), I am also interested in their applications in physics. ...
8
votes
1answer
283 views

About the general expression of trace anomaly and CFT partition functions

I have put up a question here, http://mathoverflow.net/questions/139685/proof-of-the-general-expression-for-anomaly-in-a-cft-and-its-partition-function Here I am putting up a slightly different ...
2
votes
1answer
43 views

How exactly is the Poisson bracket of the modes of a classical string defined?

In the theory of a classical bosonic string, we have expressions like: $$ \{\alpha^\mu_m,\alpha^\nu_n \} = - i m \delta_{m,-n} \eta^{\mu \nu} $$ were $\alpha^\mu_n$ are the Fourier modes of the ...
5
votes
1answer
124 views

Where and how exactly does string theory and Q.E.D. use zeta function regularization?

In the video they mention it being used in many fields of physics inclusing String and QED theory. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w-I6XTVZXww But I remember reading somewhere that 1+2+3..=-1/12 is ...
2
votes
1answer
98 views

Where do our 4 macroscopic spacetime dimensions reside in multidimensional models of the universe?

In models such as M-theory with 7 'higher dimensions' plus the 4 macroscopic spacetime dimensions, where do our 4 macroscopic spacetime dimensions reside ordinally? My reason for asking is TV shows ...
6
votes
4answers
529 views

Measuring extra-dimensions

I have read and heard in a number of places that extra dimension might be as big as $x$ mm. What I'm wondering is the following: How is length assigned to these extra dimensions? I mean you can ...
4
votes
3answers
232 views

What Does it Mean for an Extra Dimension to Have Size?

Recently I watched this presentation by Brian Greene on string theory. In it he describes how the reason we don't observe the extra dimensions required by string theory could be because they are very ...
2
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0answers
324 views

BICEP2 and string theory

Can anybody elaborate on the implications of the BICEP2 result for string theory? The discussion here What experiment would disprove string theory? suggests that refuting string theory is rather ...
4
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2answers
243 views

Dimensions of strings in string theory

In the above image taken from wikipedia, at the string level the strings have been shown as some loops, the article in wikipedia says that in string theory the particles at lower level are broken ...
16
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1answer
756 views

Zero modes ~ zero eigenvalue modes ~ zero energy modes?

There have been several Phys.SE questions on the topic of zero modes. Such as, e.g., zero-modes (What are zero modes?, Can massive fermions have zero modes?), majorana-zero-modes (Majorana zero ...
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0answers
65 views

What is the most fundamental peice of matter? What is it that thing which can no more be sub-divided?

I know that there is theory that strings are the most fundamental particles. But if it is a string, then it can be 'cut' into pieces, and if it can be 'cut', then it can be cut at infinitely many ...
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0answers
49 views

Action for $p-p'$ strings (equation 13.5.21 in Polchinski's textbook)

This action reads $$S=-\frac{1}{4g_{D9}^2}\int d^{10}x F_{MN} F^{MN}-\frac{1}{4g_{D5}^2}\int d^{6}x F'_{MN} F'^{MN}- \int d^6 x \left[ D_{\mu} \chi^{\dagger} D^{\mu} \chi + ...
3
votes
1answer
97 views

Can a D-brane be closed and contractible?

Let's consider for simplicity D-branes in bosonic string theory. I have a very basic question whose answer I couldn't find clearly stated in the few textbooks where I looked for it. Take for ...
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0answers
38 views

How to deduce equations 3.6.15 in Polchinski's string theory book? [duplicate]

In polchinski's first course on string, with how to deduce