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.

learn more… | top users | synonyms (7)

11
votes
1answer
995 views

Quivers in String Theory

Why do a physicist, particularly a string theorist care about Quivers ? Essentially what I'm interested to know is the origin of quivers in string theory and why studying quivers is a natural thing ...
10
votes
2answers
1k views

Do traversable wormholes exist as solutions to string theory?

There has been some heated debate as to whether the laws of physics allow for traversable wormholes. Some physicists claim we require exotic matter to construct wormholes, but then others counter the ...
9
votes
1answer
350 views

Can the connectivity of space change in string theory?

A flop transition changes the second homotopy group of a Calabi-Yau compactifation, but not the fundamental group or the number of connected components. Can the number of connected spatial components ...
7
votes
1answer
752 views

Bosonic Tachyon Condensation?

The tachyonic string mode in perturbative bosonic string theory indicates that the "vacuum", flat Minkowski $\mathbb{R}^{25,1}$, is not really a vacuum. What is conjectured about tachyon condensation ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

Is string length in string theory quantized?

Is there a minimal string length (maybe the Planck length), and is it quantized? Do strings have a 0-dimensional (ie point) cross-section?
6
votes
1answer
242 views

A question about Lorentz invariance of the Polyakov action

I have a super basic and stupid question about the Lorentz invariance of the Polyakov action (cannot skip the disclaimer..) $$S_p[X,\gamma]=-\frac{1}{4 \pi \alpha'} \int_{-\infty}^{\infty} d \tau ...
6
votes
1answer
469 views

Energy-momentum tensor of Bosonic Ghost Action in String Theory

When quantizing bosonic string theory by means of the path integral, one inverts the Faddeev-Popov determinant by going to Grassmann variables, yielding: $$ S_{\mathrm{ghosts}} = ...
6
votes
1answer
461 views

Do we need a quantum deformation of the diffeomorphism group in string theory?

Let me justify my question before I go on. In string theory, gravitons are strings extended over space. Longitudinal gravitons are pure gauge modes of the diffeomorphism group. However, in string ...
5
votes
0answers
278 views

String frame and Einstein frame for a Dp-brane

The low energy effective action for $N$ D$p$-branes in the string frame is $$ S_\text{eff} = \frac{1}{16\pi G_{10}}\int d^{10}x \sqrt{-g}\ e^{-2\phi}(R+ 4(\partial\phi)^2+\cdots) $$ where $R$ is the ...
4
votes
1answer
345 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
3answers
1k views

Give a description of M-theory your grandmother can understand

Inspired by this question, let me ask a similar question. Is it possible to do the same (give a description of M-theory your grandmother could understand)for M theory? While I know even experts don't ...
3
votes
0answers
82 views

Confusion on Polchinski P.67

I am reading Polchinski's String Theory Volume I. While I am learning the basics of string scatterings in Ch.3, I went back to chapter 2 and review the part of vertex operators. However, I found that ...
3
votes
1answer
133 views

The spin and weight of a primary field in CFT

A primary field in Conformal Field Theory transforms as $$\phi (z,\bar{z}) =\left(\frac{dz}{dz'} \right)^h \left(\frac{d\bar{z}}{d\bar{z}'} \right)^\bar{h}\phi (z',\bar{z}') $$ under a conformal ...
3
votes
1answer
577 views

Symmetric transverse traceless tensors of rank $s$ and $(s,0,0,..,0)$ representations of $SO(n)$

Can someone help see this connection as to why a spin $s$ (an Integer) particle is to be thought of as a symmetric transverse traceless tensor of rank $s$ and that they lie in the $(s,0,0,..,0)$ ...
3
votes
2answers
19k 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.
2
votes
0answers
67 views

Amplitude for a string to propagate from one point to another

In Zwiebach’s book sections 12.6 and 12.7 interesting aspects of the wave function of the string are discussed. In order to introduce my question first recall what happens with the relativistic ...
2
votes
1answer
279 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 $D+1$ ...
2
votes
2answers
447 views

Non-renormalizable corrections to GUT unification

While writing these answers: Hypercharge for U(1) in SU(2)xU(1) model and Is there a concise-but-thorough statement of the Standard Model? , it occured to me that the unification prediction for ...
9
votes
8answers
3k views

What future technologies does particle physics and string theory promise? [closed]

What practical application can we expect from particle physics a century or two from now? What use can we make of quark-gluon plasmas or strange quarks? How can we harness W- and Z-bosons or the Higgs ...
8
votes
3answers
2k 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?
8
votes
1answer
583 views

What's with Mandelstam's argument that only linear regge trajectories are stable?

While thinking about how to answer a "describe string theory" question, I remembered an old argument of Stanley Mandelstam's that linear Regge trajectories implies stability. I never fully understood ...
7
votes
1answer
261 views

Reference for the ${\cal N}=3$ Chern-Simons Lagrangian at general $N_c$, $N_f$

I was wondering if someone could give me a reference where someone has explicitly written the Lagrangian for ${\cal N}=3$ $SU(N_c)$ Chern-Simons theory coupled to $N_f$ fundamental hypermultiplets. ...
6
votes
2answers
231 views

What happens if the holonomy group lies in $SU(2)$ for a CY 3-fold?

I am a mathematician and reading a physics paper about the holonomy group of Calabi-Yau 3-folds. In that paper, a Calabi-Yau 3-fold $X$ is defined as a compact 3-dimensional complex manifold with ...
6
votes
2answers
893 views

On black holes, Hawking radiation and gravitational atoms

Over the past hour or so I've been following one of my standard physics-based, wanders-through-the-internet. Specifically, I began by reviewing some details of dark energy theory but soon found myself ...
5
votes
1answer
227 views

The basic equation of bosonization

[..quoting from Page 11 of Polchinski Vol2..] Given $1+1$ conformal bosonic fields $H(z)$ one has their OPE as, $H(z)H(0) \sim -ln(z)$ Then from here how do the following identities come? ...
5
votes
1answer
402 views

${f=ma}$: a duality between F-theory and M-theory?

$$F = M \Big|_{A(T^2) \to 0}$$ The above equation is the duality equation between F-theory and M-Theory on a vanishing 2-torus. What's the explanation for this equation? Is there anything similar ...
5
votes
1answer
436 views

Defining a CFT using beta-functions

Won't it be correct to define a CFT as a QFT such that the beta-function of all the couplings vanish? But couldn't it be possible that the beta-function of a dimensionful coupling vanishes but it ...
5
votes
0answers
220 views

The ${\cal N} = 3$ Chern-Simons matter lagrangian

This question is sort of a continuation of this previous question of mine. I would like to know of some further details about the Lagrangian discussed in this paper in equation 2.8 (page 7) and in ...
5
votes
1answer
385 views

Why do Calabi-Yau manifolds crop up in string theory, and what their most useful and suggestive form? [duplicate]

Why do Calabi-Yau manifolds crop up in String Theory? From reading "The Shape of Inner Space", I gather one reason is of course that Calabi-Yaus are vacuum solutions of the GR equations. But are there ...
5
votes
2answers
852 views

How much can AdS/CMT tell us?

I will begin my research on AdS/CMT, however I find AdS/CMT is only a phenomelogical method, so I want to know can AdS/CMT give some results the condensed matter physicists can not give, or even ...
4
votes
1answer
110 views

Bosonic and fermionic partitions

Let us look at a set of fermionic and creation operators $b_n$, $b_n^\dagger$ with $n$ a positive integer. Here fermionic means they obey the anti-commutation relations$$\{b_n, b_m\} = \{b_n^\dagger, ...
4
votes
4answers
562 views

Quantum mechanics threshold

First of all I beg your forgiveness as I am not a physicist and the question I am going to ask may sound silly. I am aware that beyond a certain threshold in the hierarchy of building blocks of ...
4
votes
1answer
133 views

Negative open string norms after BRST cohomology?

The question Disappearance of moduli for condensate of open strings made me think. Suppose we have a Dp-brane completely wrapped over a $T^d$ compactification with $p\leqslant d$. Look at an open ...
4
votes
1answer
692 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
1answer
375 views

What does AdS/CFT have to say about quantum gravity in our world?

The Ads side of the AdS/CFT correspondence is a model of quantum gravity in 5 dimensional antidesitter space. What can it say about quantum gravity in our 4-spacetime dimensions? Or is it just a toy ...
4
votes
2answers
381 views

Why do we have so many dualities in string theory?

Why do we have so many dualities in string theory? Is there a reason for that?
3
votes
2answers
355 views

Why M-theory has only M2 and M5 branes?

Why M-theory has only M2 and M5 branes? In string theory, depending on the type one considers, you get all kind of D-branes. What is so special in M-theory that only allows 2 and 5 branes?
3
votes
0answers
160 views

Proof for the Mass gap of sine-Gordon action with $g \cos(\beta \Phi)$

This is the sine-Gordon action: $$ \frac{1}{4\pi} \int_{ \mathcal{M}^2} dt \; dx \; k\, \partial_t \Phi \partial_x \Phi - v \,\partial_x \Phi \partial_x \Phi + g \cos(\beta_{}^{} \cdot\Phi_{}) $$ ...
3
votes
0answers
157 views

What is the physical meaning of equivalence of 1st and 2nd quantization formalism?

Ref (Superstring theory (Green, Schwarz, Witten)) Take an $n$ dimensional euclidean space-time $x_0,x_1...x_{n -1}$, a relativist real scalar field, with a propagator $G_E(x,y)$. The propagator ...
3
votes
0answers
178 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 $S$ ...
2
votes
1answer
96 views

In M Theory, what does the M5 brane look like?

In M theory, the fundamental 1 strings are made out of the compactification of an M2 brane. In String Theory: Volume 2, Superstring Theory and Beyond By Joseph Polchinski Pg. 204 He states that ...
2
votes
1answer
199 views

What causes gravity in M-Theory?

New and updated, because people were misunderstanding what I meant! General relativity describes gravity as the result of....(very roughly) spacetime curvature Newtonian gravity describes gravity as ...
2
votes
0answers
84 views

What exactly does it mean to wrap a D-brane or a M-brane in a Riemann surface $\Sigma_g$?

What exactly does it mean to wrap a D-brane or an M-brane in a Riemann surface $\Sigma_g$ ($g$ is the genous)? Is there some mathematical statement? And why do we get various supersymmetric gauge ...
2
votes
1answer
129 views

How do I show the existence of a conserved ghost number with BRST in bosonic string theory?

I have three questions about the BRST symmetry in Polchinski's string theory vol I p. 126-127, which happen together Given a path integral $$ \int [ d\phi_i dB_A db_A d c^{\alpha}] ...
2
votes
2answers
2k views

The meaning of multiverse

A) I am intrigued by the multiverse theory as mentioned in Stephen Hawking's new book, "The Grand Design". According to his theory, one can have different 'universes' in one ultimate existence, a ...
2
votes
1answer
597 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 ...
1
vote
0answers
192 views

I want to decompose a tensor product using Littlewood-Richardson rule, How do I find the component of this in each irreducible space?

Let me set up the notation I am using. $(abc,de)$ denotes the standard Young tableau where the first row is $abc$ and the second row is $de$. Each young tableau corresponds to the young symmetriser, ...
1
vote
0answers
43 views

About parametrizing quadratic fluctuations in the metric about $AdS_2 \times S^2$

I am referring to the contents of page 20-23 of the paper, http://arxiv.org/abs/1108.3842.pdf Equation 4.5 seems to suggest that one wants to restrict the metric fluctuations $h$ to a subset such ...
1
vote
1answer
371 views

Defining Euclidean global AdS

How does one see that that the Euclidean AdS is the same as the hyperbolic space at the same dimension ie $EAdS_n = \mathbb{H}_n = SO_0(n,1)/SO(n)$? Or is this to be seen as the definition of ...
0
votes
1answer
78 views

Geometry of spacetime and spinor bilinears

In this paper (http://arxiv.org/abs/0704.0247) p.20, the author says in the section titled Geometry of spacetime the following: In order to obtain the spacetime geometry, we consider the spinor ...