String Seminars

This series consists of talks in the area of Superstring Theory.

Seminar Series Events/Videos

Currently there are no upcoming talks in this series.

 

Tuesday Jun 08, 2010
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We study time dependent couplings in conformal field theories using rotating probe branes in AdS X S spacetimes. We find that induced metrics on the brane worldvolumes develop horizons with characteristic Hawking temperatures even when there is no black hole in the bulk. This framework is used to obtain toy models for quantum quench.

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Tuesday Jun 01, 2010
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Quantization of string theory on the AdS(3) backgrounds with the RR flux, such as AdS(3)xS(3)xT(4) or AdS(3)xS(3)xS(3)xS(1), is an unsolved problem. Since the sigma model on these backgrounds is classically integrable, one can try to implement powerful methods of integrability similar to those used to solve AdS(5)/CFT(4) and AdS(4)/CFT(3). I will describe the integrability approach to the AdS(3) backgrounds, emphasizing the differences to the better understood cases of AdS(5) and AdS(4).

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Friday May 14, 2010
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Two-dimensional non-linear sigma models on some supergroup manifolds are conformal field theories whether the action includes a Wess-Zumino term or not. These models are relevant for the worldsheet description of string theory in Anti-de Sitter backgrounds with Ramond-Ramond fluxes. The current algebra is an useful tool to study these theories. In these lectures I will review the construction of the current algebra. Then I will discuss some applications to the computation of the spectrum and integrability.

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Wednesday May 12, 2010
Speaker(s): 

Two-dimensional non-linear sigma models on some supergroup manifolds
are conformal field theories whether the action includes a Wess-Zumino
term or not. These models are relevant for the worldsheet description
of string theory in Anti-de Sitter backgrounds with Ramond-Ramond
fluxes. The current algebra is an useful tool to study these theories.
In these lectures I will review the construction of the current
algebra. Then I will discuss some applications to the computation of
the spectrum and integrability.

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Tuesday May 11, 2010
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In this talk, I will show that the five-dimensional Maxwell theory with a Chern-Simons coupling larger than a critical value in the Reissner-Nordstrom black hole geometry has tachyonic modes. This instability has an interesting property that it happens only at non-vanishing momenta, suggesting a spatially modulated phase transition in the holographically dual field theory. The final state after the phase transition has taken place will be discussed in detail in a special limit

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Tuesday May 04, 2010
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The seminar is devoted to the solution of the AdS/CFT spectral problem, both for infinite and finite volume cases, using integrability. The basic constructions will be explained using an analogy with the relativistic O(4) sigma model. We devote a special attention to the study of the so called dressing factor. This is a scalar factor of the scattering matrix fixed using discrete crossing symmetry.

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Tuesday Apr 27, 2010
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A systematic method to construct 4d N=2 supersymmetric theories by compactifying M5-branes on a Riemann surface was found by Gaiotto last year.
This suggests that any physical quantity of the 4d theory should be reflected in another physical quantity of the 2d theory living on the Riemann surface.
Indeed, one finds that the instanton partition function of the 4d theories equals the conformal blocks of the 2d theory.
I would like to illustrate this construction through explicit examples.

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Tuesday Mar 30, 2010
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We apply newly-developed techniques for studying perturbative scattering amplitudes to gauge theories with matter. It is well known that the N=4 SYM theory has a very simple S-matrix; do other gauge theories see similar simplifications in their S-matrices? It turns out the one-loop gluon S-matrix simplifies if the matter representations satisfy some group theoretic constraints. In particular, these constraints can be expressed as linear Diophantine equations involving the higher order Indices (or higher-order Casimirs) of these representations.

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Tuesday Mar 16, 2010
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Two of the most exciting observables in the cosmic microwave background (CMB) radiation, which could deeply impact our picture of the early universe, are non-Gaussianity and tensor modes. A potential detection of tensor modes can be explained in terms of a model of large field inflation. Theoretical considerations suggest that a symmetry should be invoked in order to protect the flatness of the inflaton potential and hence an axion enjoying a shift symmetry is a natural candidate. As main example, I will present a model of inflation in string theory based on axion monodromy.

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Tuesday Mar 02, 2010
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F-theory based vacua provide a potentially promising starting point for realizing Grand Unified Theories (GUTs) in string theory. In minimal realizations of this framework based on a point of E8 unification, this turns out to be quite constraining, and leads to specific expectations for the form of supersymmetry breaking. We discuss how the parameters of the F-theory GUT determine the sparticle spectrum, and possible signatures at the LHC.

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