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

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 ...
0
votes
0answers
62 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
71 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 + ...
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 ...
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 ...
2
votes
2answers
165 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( ...
-1
votes
2answers
226 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 ...
6
votes
1answer
290 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 ...
5
votes
2answers
99 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 ...
0
votes
2answers
125 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 ...
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?
4
votes
1answer
141 views

Vibrational anharmonic coupling and noise-induced spontaneous symmetry breaking in a hexagonal finite mechanical lattice

Happy holidays, everyone! The following is part question, part visual gallery, and part classical mechanics problem. Inspired by snow over the weekend I began simulating the vibrations of the ...
3
votes
2answers
150 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?
2
votes
3answers
142 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 ...
4
votes
1answer
93 views

What is the symmetry associated with the local particle number conservation law for fluid?

According to Nother's theorem, every continuous symmetry of a classical field correspond to a conservation law. In fluid, there is a local particle number conservation law, which is ...
8
votes
1answer
136 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 ...
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} + ...
4
votes
1answer
262 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 ...
6
votes
2answers
279 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?
1
vote
2answers
195 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 ...
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?
0
votes
1answer
96 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
61 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 ...
0
votes
1answer
74 views

Symmetries of a Uniform Magnetic Field

Simple question. A system with a uniform electric field everywhere in space has translational invariance in the directions perpendicular to the electric field but no translational invariance parallel ...
3
votes
2answers
174 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 ...
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
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 ...
1
vote
0answers
73 views

Linearized gravity and symmetries

I have naive question. When we analyzing weak gravity field we introduce expression for metric tensor as $$ g_{\mu \nu} = \eta_{\mu \nu} + h_{\mu \nu}, \quad \eta_{\mu \nu} = diag(1, -1, -1, -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 ...
6
votes
1answer
276 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 ...
2
votes
0answers
269 views

What is the definition of particle-hole symmetry in condensed matter physics?

People often talk about particle-hole symmetry in solid state physics. What are the exact definition and physics picture of particle-hole symmetry? How to define the density of particles and holes?
8
votes
1answer
457 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
0answers
261 views

Killing vectors for 2-sphere as generators of $SO(3)$ symmetry

How to get Killing vectors in a form of generators of $SO(3)$ group symmetry? By using Killing equations for metric $ds^{2} = d\theta^{2} + \sin^{2}(\theta^{2}) d\varphi^{2}$ I got $$ ...
3
votes
1answer
74 views

How do we know that weak isospin is an exact symmetry while strong isospin is not?

It is said in textbooks that if the $SU(2)_f$ or $SU(3)_f$ flavor symmetry were exact for sstrong isospin, then all members of the multiplets would be exactly equally massive. By looking at quark ...
5
votes
1answer
187 views

A simple conjecture on the Chern number of a 2-level Hamiltonian $H(\mathbf{k})$?

For example, let's consider a quadratic fermionic Hamiltonian on a 2D lattice with translation symmetry, and assume that the Fourier transformed Hamiltonian is described by a $2\times2$ Hermitian ...
4
votes
1answer
188 views

What are the generators of spherical symmetry?

The title says it all. I think this should be a pretty simple question but I just couldn't find the answer. Ok -- I'll give a bit more context to my question. I'm encountering this in the context of ...
3
votes
0answers
69 views

What does the term 'a uniform RVB spin-liquid state' mean?

I encountered this term a uniform RVB spin-liquid state in some articles, for example, see the paragraph under Eq.(29) on page 9 in this paper. What does the word 'uniform ' mean? Simply from the ...
1
vote
1answer
149 views

Time reversal and parity symmetry

I was previously under the misapprehension that time $T$ and parity $P$ symmetries in conjunction ($PT$) were a reflection in $(3+1)$-dimensional space-time, where $$P: \vec x \to -\vec x$$ $$T: t ...
0
votes
1answer
114 views

Big Bang and Spherical Symmetry

If the universe did indeed start with the big bang why is the universe not spherically symmetric? As per Wikipedia entry on Big Bang, (and my understanding as well) big bang is the best explanation ...
1
vote
1answer
270 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 ...
4
votes
2answers
134 views

Why Goldstone Bosons? (A Question about VEVs)

I understand how the mechanism of spontaneous symmetry breaking works, and why it produces Goldstone bosons (for global symmetries) and massive gauge bosons (for local ones). However, I'm confused as ...
4
votes
0answers
117 views

Time Reversal in Euclidean Spacetime - unitary or antiunitary?

(pre-request) We know that time reversal operator $T$ is an anti-unitary operator in Minkowsi Spacetime. i.e. $$ T z=z^*T $$ where the complex number $z$ becomes its complex conjugate. See, for ...
3
votes
1answer
112 views

Ghost Number Conservation

I've been reading about gauge theory quantization, and understand it mostly. The only thing I don't get is why people talk about "ghost number conservation". As far as I can tell, the ghost number is ...
2
votes
3answers
120 views

What does “transform among themselves” mean?

I'm reading a script on atomic physics, and there's a chapter on irreducible tensors. I can't understand the meaning of "transform among themselves" in this context: An arbitrary rotation of the ...
5
votes
3answers
329 views

Nobel Prize 2013: What is it about? [closed]

I would really like to understand Higgs-Englert’s discovery that earned them the 2013 physics Nobel prize. I tried reading their work, but understood nothing of it unfortunately. The reason why I’m ...
2
votes
1answer
177 views

A naive question on the $U(1)$ gauge transformation of electromagnetic field?

For simplicity, in the following we set the electric charge $e=1$ and consider a lattice spinless free electron system in an external static magnetic field $\mathbf{B}=\nabla\times\mathbf{A}$ ...
3
votes
0answers
159 views

Some ambiguous points on Spontaneous Symmetry Breaking (SSB)?

Almost in every textbook of condensed matter physics, the standard description of SSB could be formulated as follows: Consider the lattice Heisenberg model in an external magnetic field ...
4
votes
1answer
161 views

Question on conserved quantities and Noether's theorem

I have a question about Noether's theorem in the context of QM, which I'll state in the context of the weak interaction but the basic point could be generalized. According to Noether's theorem, given ...