We say that something is symmetric if there is some transformation we can perform on that object that leaves some property unchanged. The set of symmetry transformations of an object form a group, and the name of this group is used as the name of the symmetry of the object.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

16
votes
0answers
237 views

Symmetries of the Standard Model: exact, anomalous, spontaneously broken

There are a number of possible symmetries in fundamental physics, such as: Lorentz invariance (or actually, Poincaré invariance, which can itself be broken down into translation invariance and ...
0
votes
1answer
65 views

Quantum explanation of Newton's Third Law of Motion

Newton's law states that for every action there is equal and opposite reaction. This law explains how rockets fly in space and accounts for the the majority of the lift action generated by a ...
6
votes
1answer
122 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 ...
3
votes
1answer
82 views

Does action really have to be Lorentz-invariant in SR?

From Landau & Lifshitz The Classical Theory Of Fields it is said: To determine the action integral for a free material particle (a particle not under the influence of any external force), we ...
-1
votes
2answers
224 views

Emmy Noether's theorem in simpler terms

I'd like to understand Noether's theorem and its contents as to what it implies in a bit simpler terms. I am familiar with mathematics unto Calculus 1,2,3 and some linear algebra and group theory. I ...
3
votes
3answers
82 views

Rotational invariance and operator-squares

My mind is drawing a blank right now. In systems with spin and orbital angular momentum, I know that rotational invariance implies that $[H, \mathbf{J}]=0$ where $\mathbf J=\mathbf L+\mathbf S$. But ...
4
votes
3answers
156 views

Defining left and right independent of a human body?

Is it possible to define right and left independent of the asymmetric human body? I am unable to think of such a definition without circular reasoning. Example: If you are facing east, your left ...
6
votes
2answers
214 views

Quantum Anomalies in Non-Gauge Theories?

I'm reading about quantum anomalies in QFT and all the examples seem to arise in gauge theories. Is it true that theories without a local gauge invariance don't have quantum anomalies? I can't think ...
1
vote
3answers
287 views

Difference between $SU(2)$ and $SU(2)$ gauge transformations?

I hear this jargon all the time, so what is the difference? (Of course this is nothing special to $SU(2)$, but rather I just took it as an example)
2
votes
1answer
65 views

Symmetry of Minkowksi Metric -> Conserved Current?

My understanding of the Minkowski Metric is that we have the freedom to choose whether to place the negative sign on the time-component or on the spatial-components. That is, either basis should ...
0
votes
1answer
116 views

Overview and doubts about Bloch's theorem and the concept of partial density of states

So I have a large confusion with QM as applied to solid state. The following is a summary of what I know, what I think I know, and what I know I don't know. I hope to stir a discussion that will help ...
1
vote
1answer
107 views

Symmetry, Transformations and non-linear transformations

I am a physics student. My mathematical background is quite weak. I just want to know the similarities (if there are any) or differences between coordinate transformation of two kinds : Rotation of ...
10
votes
1answer
388 views

Motivation for preservation of spacetime volume by Lorentz transformation?

My favorite way of deriving the Lorentz transformation is to start from symmetry principles (an approach originated in Ignatowsky 1911; cf. Pal 2003), and one of my steps is to prove a lemma stating ...
0
votes
0answers
30 views

Axis of reflection in a mirror [duplicate]

When I look at my reflection in a planar mirror, the image I see is reflected about a vertical axis. Why is it this axis and not the horizontal axis?
5
votes
1answer
95 views

Are conformal, Killing and homothetic vector fields the same in pseudo-riemannian manifolds?

I work in the Lorentzian manifolds, more generally in pseudo Riemannian manifolds and applications to general relativity. I know the definitions of conformal, Killing and homothetic vector fields in ...
1
vote
1answer
152 views

Relation between symmetries and Killing vectors by Weinberg

In his book, "Gravity and Cosmology", Weinberg talks about relations between homogeneous metric spaces and Klling vectors. First he says about infinitesimal isometrics $$ x^{\alpha}{'} = x^{\alpha} + ...
0
votes
0answers
59 views

Symmetry of wave pulse

How can one decide whether a wave pulse is symmetrical by looking at its equation? $$y(x,t)=\frac{0.8}{[4x+5t]^2} $$ represents a moving pulse will it be symmetric?
3
votes
1answer
81 views

What if the kinetic energy of a particle was some other function $f(v)$?

This is a "what if this was how the universe worked" kind of question. I don't know if those belong in Physics StackExchange, and I apologize if they don't. Suppose we have two reference frames ...
3
votes
1answer
159 views

Is the spin-rotation symmetry of Kitaev model $D_2$ or $Q_8$?

It is known that the Kitaev Hamiltonian and its spin-liquid ground state both break the $SU(2)$ spin-rotation symmetry. So what's the spin-rotation-symmetry group for the Kitaev model? It's obvious ...
3
votes
1answer
70 views

Noether's theorem for more interesting transformations of the time co-ordinate

According to Wikipedia, Noether's theorem (for the mechanics of a point particle) says that if the following transformation is a symmetry of the Lagrangian $$t \to t + \epsilon T$$ $$q \to q + ...
2
votes
2answers
164 views

Noether's theorem and time-dependent Lagrangians

Noether's theorem says that if the following transformation is a symmetry of the Lagrangian $t \to t + \epsilon T$ $q \to q + \epsilon Q$ Then the following quantity is conserved $\left( ...
4
votes
0answers
28 views

What groups of symmetry are most suited for filling uniformely a spherical 3D space, whilst possessing the lowest possible surface-to-volume ratio?

I am looking for the closest known approximate solution to Kelvin foams problem that would obey a spherical symmetry. One alternative way of formulating it: I am looking for an equivalent of ...
5
votes
2answers
98 views

Is it possible to determine the universality class of phase transitions by just analysing symmetry?

Since phase transition is closely connected with symmetry, I am wondering whether it is possible to determine the universality class of phase transitions just by symmetry? Actually, I found it is ...
12
votes
6answers
2k views

What is the symmetry which is responsible for conservation of mass?

According to Noether's theorem, all conservation laws originate from invariance of a system to shifts in a certain space. For example conservation of energy stems from invariance to time translation. ...
6
votes
1answer
287 views

Is Conformal Symmetry Local or Global?

I'm just brushing up on a bit of CFT, and I'm trying to understand whether conformal symmetry is local or global in the physics sense. Obviously when the metric is viewed as dynamical then the ...
8
votes
1answer
134 views

How does the electron electric dipole moment (EDM) depend on supersymmetry?

I have read a recent paper that says that limit on the EDM of the electron has now been measured to 12 times better accuracy. According to that paper, as I understood, there should be a difference in ...
9
votes
2answers
453 views

Groups acting on physics - a clarification on electrons and spin

My first question is fairly basic, but I would like to clarify my understanding. The second question is to turn this into something worth answering. Consider a relativistic electron, described by a ...
2
votes
3answers
141 views

Do algorithms have an intrinsic time direction?

This article says There is no intrinsic time direction in Newton's mechanics nor in the differential equations of the new physics. My question is, do other types of mathematics, say a cellular ...
0
votes
2answers
124 views

Symmetries of relativistic Lagrangian and Hamiltonian systems

In non-relativistic mechanics, the conserved quantities found using Noethers theorem in Lagrangian mechanics are the same as those quantities which are conserved under canonical commutation with the ...
8
votes
1answer
456 views

How are anyons possible?

If $|ψ\rangle$ is the state of a system of two indistinguishable particles, then we have an exchange operator P which switches the states of the two particles. Since the two particles are ...
3
votes
1answer
133 views

Why does total spin conservation law forbid the spin wave gap in Heisenberg magnets?

What is the explanation for total spin conservation forbidding the spin wave gap in Heisenberg magnets?
1
vote
2answers
194 views

Is the spin-singlet state also a Resonating-Valence-Bond(RVB) state?

The spin-singlet state of a lattice spin-1/2 system is defined as $S_x\Psi=S_y\Psi=S_z\Psi=0$, where $S_\alpha=\sum S_i^\alpha(\alpha=x,y,z)$ are the total spin operators, in other words, a ...
3
votes
2answers
149 views

Why does $\ell=0$ correspond to spherically symmetric solutions for the spherical harmonics?

In quantum mechanics why do states with $\ell=0$ in the Hydrogen atom correspond to spherically symmetric spherical harmonics?
4
votes
1answer
254 views

Why there is a flat band for Kagome lattice?

For the nearest neighbor hopping model on the Kagome lattice, there is a flat band among the three energy bands. Is there some reason, such as symmetry or the special structure of the model, to ...
13
votes
2answers
2k views

Definite Parity of Solutions to a Schrödinger Equation with even Potential?

I am reading up on the Schrödinger equation and I quote: Because the potential is symmetric under $x\to-x$, we expect that there will be solutions of definite parity. Could someone kindly ...
2
votes
1answer
62 views

What is the nucleon axial charge?

Can someone point me to a short definition of what the nucleon axial charge is?
6
votes
2answers
277 views

How can one see that the Hydrogen atom has $SO(4)$ symmetry?

For solving hydrogen atom energy level by $SO(4)$ symmetry, where does the symmetry come from? How can one see it directly from the Hamiltonian?
15
votes
2answers
374 views

Coulomb gauge fixing and “normalizability”

The Setup Let Greek indices be summed over $0,1,\dots, d$ and Latin indices over $1,2,\dots, d$. Consider a vector potential $A_\mu$ on $\mathbb R^{d,1}$ defined to gauge transform as $$ A_\mu\to ...
0
votes
1answer
95 views

How to show that value is conserved along geodesics?

Let's have the motion of charged particle in a field of Reissner-type black hole. The equation of motion looks like $$ \frac{d^{2}x^{\mu}}{d \tau^{2}} + \Gamma^{\mu}_{\nu \lambda}\frac{dx^{\nu}}{d ...
1
vote
1answer
59 views

What are the Generators of the electroweak interaction after symmetry breaking. (SM)

In the standard model (omitting the QCD part), we start off with the set of generators $T_1$, $T_2$, $T_3$, $Y$ for the four-parametric gauge group $SU(2)_L \times U(1)_Y$. We then define a new ...
3
votes
0answers
91 views

Some hints for special case of metric tensor in GR

Let's have metric $$ ds^2 = dt^2 - dx^2 - dy^2 - dz^2 - 2f(t - z, x, y)(dt - dz)^2. $$ I need to prove that it is an exact solution for Einstein equations in vacuum for $\partial_{x}^{2}f + ...
1
vote
1answer
265 views

Explicit time dependence of the Lagrangian and Energy Conservation

Why is energy(or in more general terms,the Hamiltonian) not conserved when the Lagrangian has an explicit time dependence? I know that we can derive the identity: $\frac{\partial ...
3
votes
2answers
172 views

Why does the $\pi$-flux state have time-reversal symmetry?

It's known that the $\pi$-flux state of the antiferromagnetic Heisenberg model on the square lattice is an important concept. The $\pi$-flux state is described by the (simplified) mean-field ...
6
votes
1answer
273 views

Explaining chirality for spin 1/2 particle

I found the following explanation for chirality for spin 1/2 particles here What happens when you rotate a left- vs right-chiral fermion 360 degree about its direction of motion. Both ...
19
votes
1answer
1k views

Emergent symmetries

As we know, spontaneous symmetry breaking(SSB) is a very important concept in physics. Loosely speaking, zero temprature SSB says that the Hamiltonian of a quantum system has some symmetry, but the ...
18
votes
5answers
898 views

Elegant approaches to quantum field theory

I have been reading Quantum Mechanics: A Modern Development by L. Ballentine. I like the way everything is deduced starting from symmetry principles. I was wondering if anyone familiar with the book ...
3
votes
2answers
125 views

Symmetry transformation in AdS space

In AdS/CFT papers the action of the SO(D,2) symmetry is usually given at the boundary where the transformations are just the conformal transformations (Poincare, scaling and special) for D+1 ...
5
votes
1answer
58 views

What's the Noether charge associated with Kaehler invariance of SuGra?

The title basically sais it all: What is the Nother charge associated with Kaehler invariance of SuGra? As the question is rather tangential to what I need to do, I have not tried explicitly ...
1
vote
1answer
141 views

A commutation problem in Hubbard model

Does the Hubbard Hamiltonian $$H=-t\sum_{\langle ij\rangle \sigma}c_{i\sigma}^{\dagger}c_{j\sigma}+h.c.+U\sum_{i}n_{i\uparrow}n_{i\downarrow}$$ commute with $\sum_{i}\mathbf{S}_i^2$? where ...
0
votes
2answers
1k views

Lorentz and Galilean transformation

I read about Lorentz and Galilean transformation in a book of modern physics some days back, but couldn't clearly understand the difference between the two? Also it was stated there that maxwell's ...