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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7
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2answers
580 views

Is string length in string theory quantized?

Is there a minimal string length (maybe the Plank length?), and is it quantized? Do strings have a 0-dimensional (ie point) cross-section?
7
votes
2answers
460 views

Interesting topics to research in mathematical physics for undergraduates

I'm planning on getting into research in mathematical physics and was wondering about interesting topics I can get into and possibly make some progress on. I'm particularity fond of abstract algebra ...
7
votes
2answers
434 views

More questions on string theory and the standard model

This is a followup question to How does string theory reduce to the standard model? Ron Maimon's answer there clarified to some extent what can be expected from string theory, but left details open ...
6
votes
0answers
97 views

String landscape in different dimensions

For D = 11 large (uncompactified) spacetime dimensions, the only "string theory" vacuum is M-theory For D = 10, there are 5 vacua. Or maybe it's more correct to say 4, since type I is S-dual to ...
5
votes
1answer
114 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 ...
5
votes
1answer
264 views

T-Duality between Type HE String theory and Type HO string theory

My question is regarding T-Duality between the 2 Type H string theories. I know that the Type II String theories are T-dual to each other because T-Duality changes the sign of the Gamma Matrix so ...
4
votes
1answer
125 views

When is entanglement entropy the same as free energy?

I am given the feeling that there exists scenarios when this equality holds. Can anyone state/refer to the situations? One case that I hear of is that for $2+1$ CFTs the entanglement entropy ...
4
votes
0answers
138 views

Expressions of action and energy momentum tensor in bc conformal field with central charge equals one

I have a question with conformal field theory in Polchinski's string theory vol 1 p. 51. For $bc$ conformal field theory $$ S=\frac{1}{2\pi} \int d^2 z b \bar{\partial} c $$ $$ T(z)= :(\partial b) ...
4
votes
1answer
514 views

Wilson loops and gauge invariant operators (Part 2)

These questions are sort of a continuation of this previous question. I would like to know of the proof/reference to the fact that in a pure gauge theory Wilson loops are all the possible gauge ...
4
votes
2answers
773 views

Does string theory and preons exclude each other?

Does string theory contradict the theory of preons, especially the Harari-Shupe one?
4
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1answer
175 views

What is the stress-energy distribution of a string in target space?

If $| \psi \rangle$ is a string mode, how do you compute $\langle \psi | \hat{T}^{\mu\nu}(\vec{x}) | \psi \rangle$ where $\vec{x}$ is a point in target space? This information will tell us the energy ...
4
votes
1answer
286 views

What are the current (popular(ish)) approaches to modelling the quantum nature of spacetime at the Planck scale?

My guess at a list of them would be: spin foams, casual sets, non-commutative geometry, Machian theories, twistor theory or strings and membranes existing in some higher-dimensional geometry... ...
3
votes
1answer
215 views

Expectation value of the stress-energy tensor in 2-D CFT

Due to a previous question, I am confused with the expectation value of the stress-energy tensor in a 2-D conformal field theory. Let's take the example of string theory, to sketch the problem. ...
3
votes
1answer
144 views

Mass spectrum of Type I string theory

I understand that the massless fields of the Type I string theory are the described by: [\begin{array}{*{20}{c}} {{\rm{Sector}}}&{{\rm{Massless fields}}}\\ {{\rm{R - R}}}&{{C_0}}\\ {{\rm{NS - ...
3
votes
1answer
205 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
1answer
99 views

Weyl symmetry and Polyakov action

I have a question in reading Polchinski's string theory volume 1. p12-p13 Given the Polyakov action $S_P[X,\gamma]= - \frac{1}{4 \pi \alpha'} \int_M d \tau d \sigma (-\gamma)^{1/2} \gamma^{ab} ...
2
votes
1answer
139 views

Why do the mismatched 16 dimensions have to be compactified on an even lattice?

The mismatched 16 dimensions between the left- (26 dimensional) and right- (10 dimensional) are compactified on even, unimodular lattices. I think I get the unimoduar part, at least intuitively, ...
2
votes
2answers
433 views

Are the $10^{500}$ different string theories being whittled down?

An example of a test: Ask each variant whether its estimate of the electron mass lies within $\pm\,x\%$ of the known value. This surely can't take long per theory. Although $10^{500}$ is huge, ...
2
votes
1answer
212 views

Tachyon vertex operator (Polchinski's book)

I would like to know how does Polchinski in his book "derive" what is the "tachyon vertex operator" (..as say stated in equation 3.6.25, 6.2.11..) I can't locate a "derivation" of the fact that ...
2
votes
0answers
115 views

Can decompactification explain the inflation of the early universe?

I've just reread chapter 11 of this book where it is explained among other things, that our four dimensional universe could be unstable concerning a decompactification transition, since potential ...
2
votes
1answer
419 views

Wilson loops and gauge invariant operators (Part 1)

I guess the Hilbert space of the theory is precisely the space of all gauge invariant operators (mod equations of motion..as pointed out in the answers) Is it possible that in a gauge theory the ...
2
votes
3answers
3k views

Why does string theory require 9 dimensions of space and one dimension of time?

String theorists say that there are many more dimensions out there, but they are too small to be detected. However, I do not understand why there are ten dimensions and not just any other number? ...
2
votes
0answers
59 views

Spectrum of Free Strings [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Spectrum of Free Strings As far as I understand, both in bosonic and superstring theory one considers initially a free string propagating through D-dimensional ...
2
votes
5answers
422 views

Can computers survive bubble nucleations?

According to string landscape theory, our vacua with a cosmological constant of $10^{-123}$ is a metastable vacua which can decay to a supersymmetric vacua with either a zero or negative cosmological ...
1
vote
0answers
88 views

Some questions about flavour and R-symmetry in $2+1$ ${\cal N}=3$ theory

I have heard this fact that for ${\cal N}=3$ theories in $2+1$ with $N_f$ ${\cal N}=3$ matter fields the flavour symmetry group is $USp(N_f)$, $U(N_f)$ or $SO(2N_f)$ depending on whether the gauge ...
9
votes
2answers
390 views

Heterotic string as worldvolume theory of two coincident 9-branes in 27 dimensions?

The heterotic string is a combination of right-moving excitations from a D=10 superstring and left-moving excitations from a D=26 bosonic string, with the left-movers behaving as if the extra 16 ...
7
votes
1answer
351 views

Mathematical concept of supersymmetry

I wish to study supersymmetry in field theory(sometime in december). However, I am quite not sure what is needed for its study. In supersymmetry, I just want to get the mathematical idea, such as its ...
7
votes
3answers
1k views

What is the physical significance of the dilaton in string theory?

Strings always have a dilaton in their spectrum. Its a scalar field (so presumably no spin), and so far a hypothetical particle. What is its physical significance?
7
votes
1answer
334 views

Why does string theory (in case it is true ) have NO divergencies?

Why is string theory in 10 or 26 dimension not divergent? Due to the high number of spacetime dimension (10 or 26) it should have a lot of UV divergencies of the form $ \int k^{n}dk $ and gravity ...
6
votes
2answers
377 views

Lagrangians combining terms with 1 and 2 derivatives

How are field theory Langrangians treated when some terms have 2 derivatives but others have only 1? Because the number of derivatives in a Lagrangian term is more easily even than odd, the ...
5
votes
1answer
260 views

Divergence theorem in complex coordinates

This question is related to Stokes' theorem in complex coordinates (CFT) but, I still don't understand :( Namely how to prove the divergence theorem in complex coordinate in Eq (2.1.9) in ...
5
votes
1answer
3k views

How would the discovery of Higgs Boson affect superstring theories?

As we probably all know, a new particle similar to Higgs Boson has been discovered. If this turns out to be true, standard model will get a boost (as the discovered mass almost equals to the ...
5
votes
1answer
343 views

Mathematically rather than physically speaking, is there something “special” about 10 (or 11) dimensions?

As I understand it, string theory (incorporating bosons and fermions) "works" in $9+1=10$ spacetime dimensions. In the context of dual resonance theory, I've read descriptions of why that is ...
4
votes
1answer
73 views

Same partition functions, different theories

I am reading the book "Basic Concepts of String Theory" by Blumenhagen, Lust and Theisen and in page 290 they say: "It follows that the $E8\times E8$ and the $SO(32)$ heterotic string theories have ...
4
votes
0answers
324 views

Mathematics and Physics prerequisites for mirror symmetry [closed]

I am a physics undergrad interested in Mathematical Physics. I am more interested in the mathematical side of things, and interested to solve problems in mathematics using Physics. My current ...
4
votes
2answers
751 views

What is energy in string theory?

Facts agreed on by most Physicists - GR: One can't apply Noether's theorem to argue there is a conserved energy. QFT: One can apply Noether's theorem to argue there is a conserved energy. String ...
3
votes
3answers
265 views

Why must the excitation of closed strings in String Theory be spin-2?

In String Theory it is predicted that as a result of the closed strings we have spin-2 gravitons. 1) How do we know there must be an excitation of spin-2 particles? 2) Why does a spin-2 particle ...
3
votes
1answer
268 views

Can we have non continuous models of reality? Why don't we have them?

This question is about Godel's theorem, continuity of reality and the Luvenheim-Skolem theorem. I know that all leading physical theories assume reality is continuous. These are my questions: 1) Is ...
2
votes
2answers
109 views

Identity of Operator Product Expansion (OPE)

I have one more s****d question in Polchinski's string theory book, Eqs. (2.3.14a) $$ j^{\mu}(z) :e^{ik \cdot X(0,0)}:~ \sim~ \frac{k^{\mu}}{2 z} :e^{ik \cdot X(0,0)}:,$$ where $j^{\mu}_a ...
2
votes
1answer
432 views

What is the mathematical nature of space time quantization in string theory/super string theory?

I don't know much about string theory, apart from it being a theory of everything which brings QM, QED and nuclear forces and gravity under one single roof. I am curious to know from a mathematical ...
1
vote
1answer
263 views

Would someone who is only interested in string theory benefit from working out the problems in Jackson electrodynamics?

This is a soft question. I'm not sure if it is appropriate for this site. Would someone who is only interested in string theory benefit from working out the problems in Jackson electrodynamics? I ...
1
vote
2answers
386 views

What Observations could undeniably support string theory?

What experiments could provide observable "stringy" effects. All valid experiments are acceptable (also theoretical experiments).
0
votes
1answer
615 views

Question on dimensions of CFT operators (ref: MAGOO, hep-th/9905111)

Right now I am having this silly difficulty from the following: BTW, Conformal dimension/scaling dimension is -ve of mass dimension ..right? In p-63 of Magoo, after 3.15 eq, they said a.) $\phi$ is ...
0
votes
3answers
12k views

Total number of subatomic particles in the universe. Are they finite ? assuming any of GR or QM or even ST

Total number of subatomic particles in the universe. Are they finite ? assuming any of GR or QM or even ST.
-3
votes
2answers
507 views

Since when were Loop Quantum Gravity (LQG) and Einstein-Cartan (EC) theories experimentally proven?

Can this template at Wikipedia be true? It seems to suggest that Einstein-Cartan theory, Gauge theory gravity, Teleparalleism and Euclidean Quantum Gravity are fully compatible with observation! It ...
-5
votes
1answer
489 views

What do scientists believe about existence in dimensions? [closed]

I couldn't really think of a suitable question title, I'm not sure if it's completely related or not. But this is as far as I know (well, I thought it all up last night and it seemed extremely ...