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Monday, December 14, 2009
1:00 PM - 2:30 PM
CNLS Conference Room (TA-3, Bldg 1690)


Conformality or confinement: (IR)relevance of topological excitations

Mithat Unsal
SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory

The non-perturbative dynamics of QCD-like and chiral gauge theories remained largely elusive despite much effort over the years. Recently, novel techniques (such as twisted partition function and center stabilizing double trace deformations) which allow us to continuously connect the physics of these gauge theories on R4 to small (non-thermal) S1 x R3 are found. In most cases, the physics of small S1 is analytically tractable, and provides much inside to the dynamics. Mass gap and confinement are typically caused by a new class of non-selfdual topological excitations referred to as magnetic bions, (a class different from well-known monopoles and instantons) and in some cases chiral symmetry breaking is probed by topological disorder operators. In this talk, I will overview these recent progress. Then, I will discuss why an asymptotically free gauge theory can flow either to confinement or conformality. This answer is typically tied with relevance versus irrelevance of magnetic bions.

Host: Sanjay Reddy