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Durham e-Theses
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Applications of higher-form symmetries at strong and weak coupling

MACFARLANE, KIERAN,STEWART (2022) Applications of higher-form symmetries at strong and weak coupling. Doctoral thesis, Durham University.

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In this thesis we consider two distinct applications of higher-form symmetries in quantum field theory. First we explore the spontaneous breaking of higher-form symmetry in a holographic quantum field theory containing matter fields in the fundamental representation of the gauge group U(N). At strong coupling, we numerically solve the bulk equations of motion to compute the current-current Green’s function and demonstrate the existence of a goldstone mode. We then compare to direct analytic perturbative results obtained at weak coupling. In the second half of the thesis we work with a hydrodynamic effective field theory which possesses a higher-form symmetry. In particular, we consider a natural higher-derivative correction to force-free electrodynamics and compute a hydrodynamic transport coefficient from microscopics. Concretely, this is a perturbative QED calculation in a background magnetic field. Finally we compare our findings to astrophysical observations.

Item Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Award:Doctor of Philosophy
Keywords:quantum field theory, higher-form symmetries, generalised global symmetries, holography, AdS CFT, force-free electrodynamics
Faculty and Department:Faculty of Science > Mathematical Sciences, Department of
Thesis Date:2022
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:10 Mar 2022 09:36

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