# On the curious spectrum of duality invariant higher-derivative gravity

## Abstract

Here, we analyze the spectrum of the exactly duality and gauge invariant higher-derivative double field theory. While this theory is based on a chiral CFT and does not correspond to a standard string theory, our analysis illuminates a number of issues central in string theory. The full quadratic action is rewritten as a two-derivative theory with additional fields. This allows for a simple analysis of the spectrum, which contains two massive spin-2 ghosts and massive scalars, in addition to the massless fields. Moreover, in this formulation, the massless or tensionless limit α' → ∞ is non-singular and leads to an enhanced gauge symmetry. We show that the massive modes can be integrated out exactly at the quadratic level, leading to an infinite series of higher-derivative corrections. Lastly, we present a ghost-free massive extension of linearized double field theory, which employs a novel mass term for the dilaton and metric.

- Authors:

- Stony Brook Univ., Stony Brook, NY (United States)
- Massachusetts Inst. of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, MA (United States)

- Publication Date:

- Research Org.:
- Massachusetts Inst. of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, MA (United States)

- Sponsoring Org.:
- USDOE Office of Science (SC)

- OSTI Identifier:
- 1362134

- Grant/Contract Number:
- SC0012567

- Resource Type:
- Journal Article: Accepted Manuscript

- Journal Name:
- Journal of High Energy Physics (Online)

- Additional Journal Information:
- Journal Name: Journal of High Energy Physics (Online); Journal Volume: 2016; Journal Issue: 8; Journal ID: ISSN 1029-8479

- Publisher:
- Springer Berlin

- Country of Publication:
- United States

- Language:
- English

- Subject:
- 72 PHYSICS OF ELEMENTARY PARTICLES AND FIELDS; effective field theories; string duality

### Citation Formats

```
Hohm, Olaf, Naseer, Usman, and Zwiebach, Barton.
```*On the curious spectrum of duality invariant higher-derivative gravity*. United States: N. p., 2016.
Web. doi:10.1007/JHEP08(2016)173.

```
Hohm, Olaf, Naseer, Usman, & Zwiebach, Barton.
```*On the curious spectrum of duality invariant higher-derivative gravity*. United States. doi:10.1007/JHEP08(2016)173.

```
Hohm, Olaf, Naseer, Usman, and Zwiebach, Barton. Wed .
"On the curious spectrum of duality invariant higher-derivative gravity". United States.
doi:10.1007/JHEP08(2016)173. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1362134.
```

```
@article{osti_1362134,
```

title = {On the curious spectrum of duality invariant higher-derivative gravity},

author = {Hohm, Olaf and Naseer, Usman and Zwiebach, Barton},

abstractNote = {Here, we analyze the spectrum of the exactly duality and gauge invariant higher-derivative double field theory. While this theory is based on a chiral CFT and does not correspond to a standard string theory, our analysis illuminates a number of issues central in string theory. The full quadratic action is rewritten as a two-derivative theory with additional fields. This allows for a simple analysis of the spectrum, which contains two massive spin-2 ghosts and massive scalars, in addition to the massless fields. Moreover, in this formulation, the massless or tensionless limit α' → ∞ is non-singular and leads to an enhanced gauge symmetry. We show that the massive modes can be integrated out exactly at the quadratic level, leading to an infinite series of higher-derivative corrections. Lastly, we present a ghost-free massive extension of linearized double field theory, which employs a novel mass term for the dilaton and metric.},

doi = {10.1007/JHEP08(2016)173},

journal = {Journal of High Energy Physics (Online)},

number = 8,

volume = 2016,

place = {United States},

year = {Wed Aug 31 00:00:00 EDT 2016},

month = {Wed Aug 31 00:00:00 EDT 2016}

}

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