Use this tag for topological field theory (Tft) and topological string theory (tst) questions.

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Wilson lines, boundary conditions, surface defects of TQFTs

I asked the following question in mathematics stack exchange but I'd like to have answers from physicists too; I have been studying (extended) topological quantum field theories (in short TQFTs) from ...
7
votes
2answers
620 views

Realization of Witten-type topological quantum field theory in condensed matter physics

It is well-known that some exotic phases in condensed matter physics are described by Schwarz-type TQFTs, such as Chern-Simons theory of quantum Hall states. My question is whether there are condensed ...
2
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1answer
178 views

Relation between electric charge and gauge parameter of the moduli space of monopoles

I am studying about the moduli space of a 2 monopole system from Harvey's notes, and Manton's paper. In both of these, (Harvey section 6.2), after constructing the Lagrangian for a two dyons system, ...
14
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5answers
2k views

Reading list in topological QFT

I'm interested in learning about topological QFT including Chern Simons theory, Jones polynomial, Donaldson theory and Floer homology - basically the kind of things Witten worked on in the 80s. I'm ...
4
votes
2answers
668 views

What happens when a bare 3d topological insulator is subject to a magnetic field?

Effective field theory of 3d topological insulators (TI) predict some novel electromagnetic effects. Unfortunately it require a gapped surface which is hard to achieve experimentally. Then I have two ...
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0answers
221 views

Topological entanglement entropy only defined for a system in the ground state?

What happens to the topological entanglement entropy of a system, when it is driven out of its groundstate by increasing the temperature?
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1answer
874 views

Topological phase

Can anybody tell me, if generically any system, which is solely described by a topological field theory, resides in a topological phase? I cant find any clear notion of topological phase. Only ...
3
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1answer
248 views

Using the covariant derivative to find force between 't Hooft-Polyakov magnetic monopoles

I am reading this research paper authored by NS Manton on the Force between 't Hooft-Polyakov monopoles. I have a doubt in equation 3.6 and 3.7. We assume the gauge field for a slowly accelerating ...
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1answer
297 views

What is the winding number of a magnetic monopole, and why is it conserved

I had asked a similar question about a calculation involving the winding number here. But i haven't got a satisfactory response. So, I am rephrasing this question in a slightly different manner. What ...
13
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1answer
926 views

Why is there no dynamics in 3D general relativity?

I heard a couple of times that there is no dynamics in 3D (2+1) GR, that it's something like a topological theory. I got the argument in the 2D case (the metric is conformally flat, Einstein equations ...
5
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0answers
94 views

Defects in 3+1 TFTs/2+1 CFTs

I would like to know of good pedagogic references to learn about the notion of "defects" in TFTs and CFTs. I am specially interested in 3+1 TFTs (.and probably about their relation to 2+1 CFTs..) In ...
5
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1answer
367 views

Integrating over a gauge field in the field integral formalism

I'm currently trying to study a chapter in Altland & Simons, "Condensed Matter Field Theory" (2nd edition) and I'm stuck at the end of section 9.5.2, page 579. Given the euclidean Chern-Simons ...
5
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1answer
263 views

what is a kink-kink-meson vertex?

These are questions I have after reading the Rajaraman's book "Solitons and instantons". So I think you must have read the book if want to answer. And also know about quantum solitons. Rajaraman ...
8
votes
3answers
201 views

String-theoretic significance of extended CFT

Extended TQFT and CFT have been puzzling me for while. While I understand the mathematical motivation behind them, I don't quite understand the physical meaning. In particular, it's not clear to me to ...
20
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3answers
1k views

Quantum field theory variants

Wikipedia describes many variants of quantum field theory: conformal quantum field theory topological quantum field theory axiomatic/constructive quantum field theory algebraic quantum field theory ...
8
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2answers
254 views

Wilson Loops in Chern-Simons theory with non-compact gauge groups

VEVs of Wilson loops in Chern-Simons theory with compact gauge groups give us colored Jones, HOMFLY and Kauffman polynomials. I have not seen the computation for Wilson loops in Chern-Simons theory ...
15
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5answers
940 views

Applications of Geometric Topology to Theoretical Physics

Geometric topology is the study of manifolds, maps between manifolds, and embeddings of manifolds in one another. Included in this sub-branch of Pure Mathematics; knot theory, homotopy, manifold ...
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1answer
156 views

Quantum gravity at D = 3

Quantization of gravity (general relativity) seems to be impossible for spacetime dimension D >= 4. Instead, quantum gravity is described by string theory which is something more than quantization ...
8
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3answers
152 views

“tmf$(n)$ is the space of supersymmetric conformal field theories of central charge $-n$”

I read this intriguing statement in John Baez' week 197 the other day, and I've been giving it some thought. The post in question is from 2003, so I was wondering if there has been any progress in ...
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0answers
94 views

Quantum statistics of branes

Quantum statistics of particles (bosons, fermions, anyons) arises due to the possible topologies of curves in D-dimensional spacetime winding around each other What happens if we replace particles by ...
3
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1answer
101 views

Is the force between solitons with same charge always repulsive?

I know the one-dimensional case in which the force is proportional to $e^{-R}$ and the force is attractive for solitons with opposite charge and repulsive for solitons with same charge. I was ...
14
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0answers
107 views

Minimal strings and topological strings

In http://arxiv.org/abs/hep-th/0206255 Dijkgraaf and Vafa showed that the closed string partition function of the topological B-model on a Calabi-Yau of the form $uv-H(x,y)=0$ coincides with the free ...
13
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2answers
405 views

Normalization of the Chern-Simons level in $SO(N)$ gauge theory

In a 3d SU(N) gauge theory with action $\frac{k}{4\pi} \int \mathrm{Tr} (A \wedge dA + \frac{2}{3} A \wedge A \wedge A)$, where the generators are normalized to $\mathrm{Tr}(T^a ...
5
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2answers
672 views

Are there solitary waves in $\phi^4$ theory in 3+1 dimensions?

In 3+1 dimensions with signature +1 -1 -1 -1, $$ \mathcal{L}= \frac{1}{2}\partial^\mu\phi\partial_\mu\phi -\phi^2/2 -\phi^4/4$$ field equation: $$\square\phi+\phi+\phi^3=0$$ (check this) ...
10
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1answer
470 views

Chern-Simons theory

In Witten's paper on QFT and the Jones polynomial, he quantizes the Chern-Simons Lagrangian on $\Sigma\times \mathbb{R}^1$ for two case: (1) $\Sigma$ has no marked points (i.e., no Wilson loops) and ...
13
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2answers
678 views

Topological twists of SUSY gauge theory

Consider $N=4$ super-symmetric gauge theory in 4 dimensions with gauge group $G$. As is explained in the beginning of the paper of Kapustin and Witten on geometric Langlands, this theory has 3 ...
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3answers
474 views

Geometric Langlands as a partially defined topological field theory

I have heard from several physicists that the Kapustin-Witten topological twist of $N=4$ 4-dimensional Yang-Mills theory ("the Geometric Langlands twist") is not expected to give rise to fully defined ...
3
votes
3answers
641 views

What is a nonlinear field?

I have read two possible definitions. A nonlinear field is A field taking values on a manifold. A field whose equation is nonlinear. What do you understand by a nonlinear field or a nonlinear ...
6
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1answer
2k views

What is a chiral field?

I have not found a clear definition of this. A teacher told me that it was a field having some constrains but that is not very convincing for me. He told me also that some examples could be skyrme ...
17
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1answer
345 views

Models of higher Chern-Simons type

It has long been clear that (the action functional of) Chern-Simons theory has various higher analogs and variations of interest. This includes of course traditional higher dimensional Chern-Simons ...
2
votes
2answers
649 views

Three-Dimensional Gravity

Does anyone have any references that discuss gravity in three-dimensions? I'm trying to make my way through some papers by Witten relating $SL(2,\mathbb{C})$ Chern-Simons theory and gravity in three ...
8
votes
3answers
1k views

Group Cohomology and Topological Field Theories

I have a two-part question: First and foremost: I have been going through the paper by Dijkgraaf and Witten "Group Cohomology and Topological Field Theories". Here they give a general definition for ...
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2answers
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Is there a T-dual of Witten's twistor topological string theory?

In late 2003, Edward Witten released a paper that revived the interest in Roger Penrose's twistors among particle physicists. The scattering amplitudes of gluons in $N=4$ gauge theory in four ...