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Publication# The particle spectrum of parity-violating Poincare gravitational theory

Abstract

In this paper we investigate the physical spectrum of the gravitational theory based on the Poincare group with terms that are at most quadratic in tetrad and spin connection, allowing for the presence of parity-even as well as parity-odd invariants. We determine restrictions on the parameters of the action so that all degrees of freedom propagate and are neither ghosts nor tachyons. We show that the addition of parity non-conserving invariants extends the healthy parameter space of the theory. To accomplish our goal, we apply the weak field approximation around flat spacetime and in order to facilitate the analysis, we separate the bilinear action for the excitations into completely independent spin sectors. For this purpose, we employ the spin-projection operator formalism and extend the original basis built previously, to be able to handle the parity-odd pieces.

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Matthijs Jan Hogervorst, Marco Meineri, Kamran Salehi Vaziri

Quantum Field Theories (QFTs) in Anti-de Sitter (AdS) spacetime are often strongly coupled when the radius of AdS is large, and few methods are available to study them. In this work, we develop a Hamiltonian truncation method to compute the energy spectrum of QFTs in two-dimensional AdS. The infinite volume of constant timeslices of AdS leads to divergences in the energy levels. We propose a simple prescription to obtain finite physical energies and test it with numerical diagonalization in several models: the free massive scalar field, phi(4) theory, Lee-Yang and Ising field theory. Along the way, we discuss spontaneous symmetry breaking in AdS and derive a compact formula for perturbation theory in quantum mechanics at arbitrary order. Our results suggest that all conformal boundary conditions for a given theory are connected via bulk renormalization group flows in AdS.

Currently, the best theoretical description of fundamental matter and its gravitational interaction is given by the Standard Model (SM) of particle physics and Einstein's theory of General Relativity (GR). These theories contain a number of seemingly unrelated scales. While Newton's gravitational constant and the mass of the Higgs boson are parameters in the classical action, the masses of other elementary particles are due to the electroweak symmetry breaking. Yet other scales, like ΛQCD associated to the strong interaction, only appear after the quantization of the theory. We reevaluate the idea that the fundamental theory of nature may contain no fixed scales and that all observed scales could have a common origin in the spontaneous break-down of exact scale invariance. To this end, we consider a few minimal scale-invariant extensions of GR and the SM, focusing especially on their cosmological phenomenology. In the simplest considered model, scale invariance is achieved through the introduction of a dilaton field. We find that for a large class of potentials, scale invariance is spontaneously broken, leading to induced scales at the classical level. The dilaton is exactly massless and practically decouples from all SM fields. The dynamical break-down of scale invariance automatically provides a mechanism for inflation. Despite exact scale invariance, the theory generally contains a cosmological constant, or, put in other words, flat spacetime need not be a solution. We next replace standard gravity by Unimodular Gravity (UG). This results in the appearance of an arbitrary integration constant in the equations of motion, inducing a run-away potential for the dilaton. As a consequence, the dilaton can play the role of a dynamical dark-energy component. The cosmological phenomenology of the model combining scale invariance and unimodular gravity is studied in detail. We find that the equation of state of the dilaton condensate has to be very close to the one of a cosmological constant. If the spacetime symmetry group of the gravitational action is reduced from the group of all diffeomorphisms (Diff) to the subgroup of transverse diffeomorphisms (TDiff), the metric in general contains a propagating scalar degree of freedom. We show that the replacement of Diff by TDiff makes it possible to construct a scale-invariant theory of gravity and particle physics in which the dilaton appears as a part of the metric. We find the conditions under which such a theory is a viable description of particle physics and in particular reproduces the SM phenomenology. The minimal theory with scale invariance and UG is found to be a particular case of a theory with scale and TDiff invariance. Moreover, cosmological solutions in models based on scale and TDiff invariance turn out to generically be similar to the solutions of the model with UG. In usual quantum field theories, scale invariance is anomalous. This might suggest that results based on classical scale invariance are necessarily spoiled by quantum corrections. We show that this conclusion is not true. Namely, we propose a new renormalization scheme which allows to construct a class of quantum field theories that are scale-invariant to all orders of perturbation theory and where the scale symmetry is spontaneously broken. In this type of theory, all scales, including those related to dimensional transmutation, like ΛQCD, appear as a consequence of the spontaneous break-down of the scale symmetry. The proposed theories are not renormalizable. Nonetheless, they are valid effective theories below a field-dependent cut-off scale. If the scale-invariant renormalization scheme is applied to the presented minimal scale-invariant extensions of GR and the SM, the goal of having a common origin of all scales, spontaneous breaking of scale invariance, is achieved.