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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360 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 ...
9
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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
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1answer
307 views

Who added $\frac{3}{2} \partial^2 c$ to the virasoro BRST current (and why)?

I've been looking at the literature on quantizing the bosonic string, and I noticed that there was a change made in the definition of the BRST current around 1992. However, I haven't found any ...
7
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1answer
470 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 ...
7
votes
1answer
832 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 ...
6
votes
1answer
535 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}} = \frac{-i}{2\pi}\int\...
6
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1answer
269 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 \...
5
votes
0answers
366 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 ...
5
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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 ...
5
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1answer
493 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
1answer
454 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 ...
3
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1answer
167 views

How exactly are the different motions of only one kind of fundamental string assumed to give rise to the spectrum of elementary particles we observe?

In string theory, it is assumed that all particles can be described as quanta corresponding to the excitations of only one kind of fundamental string. How can in principle the different motion ...
3
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1answer
74 views

S-duality of Einstein-Maxwell-Dilaton theory

Consider theory with action $$S = \int d^D x \sqrt{-g} (R - \frac{1}{2} \partial_\mu \phi \partial^\mu \phi - \frac{1}{2k!} e^{a \phi} F^2 _{[k]} ) $$ where $\phi$ is dilaton and $F_{[k]}$ is ...
3
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0answers
100 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
692 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
1answer
170 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 ...
2
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0answers
81 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
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2answers
459 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 Georgi-...
2
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1answer
243 views

A certain $\cal{N}=2$ superconformal theory (or is it?)

I want to look at the following theory in $1+1$ dimensions with $\Phi$ being the chiral superfield, $L = \int d^2x d^4\theta \bar{\Phi}\Phi - \int d^2x d^2\theta \frac{\Phi^{k+2}}{k+2} - \int d^2x d^...
13
votes
1answer
294 views

realization of: CFT generating fuction = AdS partition function

An important aspect of the AdS/CFT correspondence is the recipe to compute correlation functions of a boundary operator $\mathcal{O} $ in terms of the supergravity fields in the interior of the $AdS_{...
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
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2answers
593 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 ...
8
votes
1answer
605 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
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1answer
270 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
896 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 ...
6
votes
2answers
924 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 ...
6
votes
2answers
244 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 ...
5
votes
1answer
241 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? $e^{iH(z)...
5
votes
2answers
395 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?
5
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1answer
431 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
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0answers
228 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 ...
4
votes
1answer
138 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
730 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
398 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 ...
3
votes
1answer
393 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 ...
3
votes
2answers
462 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
184 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 ...
2
votes
1answer
640 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
2answers
3k 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
0answers
93 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
141 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}] \exp(-S_1-S_2-S_3)...
2
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1answer
299 views

D branes Ns brane and p-branes

It is now a common knowledge that "D-p branes are equivalent to p-branes" due to Polchinski's work. Note that D-p branes are objects in string theory and p-branes are objects in blackhole theory. So ...
2
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1answer
177 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 ...
1
vote
1answer
412 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 ...
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0answers
207 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, ...
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0answers
46 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 ...
0
votes
1answer
103 views

What are susy transformations for N=2 sugra?

Killing spinor equations are equations that result from supersymmetric transformations. One example of those is for example is in $N=2$ Supergravity theories. As suggested by some books and papers on ...
0
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1answer
96 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 ...
12
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1answer
555 views

The measure problem in the anthropic principle

The anthropic principle is based upon Bayesian reasoning applied to the ensemble of universes, or parts thereof, conditioned upon the existence of conscious observers. That still leaves us with the ...