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MAD/TH9114 November 1991

Summary: MAD/TH­91­14
November 1991
Duality and the Vacuum
Theodore J. Allen #
Department of Physics, University of Wisconsin
1150 University Avenue, Madison, WI 53706 USA
We examine the issue of duality both in electrodynamics and in Kalb--Ramond---
scalar axion systems. In D spacetime dimensions the dual abelian theories of p-1­ and
D- p - 1­form potentials have vacua classified by the dimensions of the cohomology
spaces H p-1 ( (D-1)
M) or H D-p-1 ( (D-1)
M) respectively. The vacua are characterized
by topological charges which are expectation values for generalized `Wilson loop'
operators around non­trivial cycles. In certain instances the vacua exhibit a theta
angle parametrization much as in QCD. The relation of axionic hair and discrete
gauge hair is analyzed in the topologically massive Kalb--Ramond theory. If there
are no fundamental strings in the theory, axionic charge is replaced by an irrelevant
vacuum angle.


Source: Allen, Theodore J. - Physics Department, Hobart and William Smith Colleges


Collections: Physics