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Title: Duality symmetries in string theory

The search for a unified theory of quantum gravity and gauge interactions leads naturally to string theory. This field of research has received a revival of interest after the discovery of duality symmetries in recent years. We present a self contained account of some non-perturbative aspects of string theory which have been recently understood. The spectrum and interactions of the five consistent superstring theories in ten dimensions are recollected and the fundamental principles underlying this initial stage in the construction of the theory are briefly reviewed. We next discuss some evidences that these apparently different superstrings are just different aspects of one unique theory. The key to this development is given by the non-perturbative duality symmetries which have modified and improved our understanding of string dynamics in many ways. In particular, by relating the fundamental objects of one theory to solitons of another theory, they have unraveled the presence of extended objects in the theory which stand on an equal footing with strings. We introduce these higher dimensional objects, named D-branes, and discuss applications of D-brane physics.
Authors:
 [1]
  1. Instituto de Astronomia y Fisica del Espacio-CONICET C.C. 67-Suc. 28, 1428 Buenos Aires (Argentina)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
21210259
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: AIP Conference Proceedings; Journal Volume: 490; Journal Issue: 1; Conference: 8. Mexican school on particles and fields, Oaxaca de Juarez (Mexico), 20-28 Nov 1998; Other Information: DOI: 10.1063/1.1301388; (c) 1999 American Institute of Physics; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
72 PHYSICS OF ELEMENTARY PARTICLES AND FIELDS; D-BRANES; DUALITY; MANY-DIMENSIONAL CALCULATIONS; PERTURBATION THEORY; QUANTUM GRAVITY; SOLITONS; SPACE-TIME; SUPERSTRING MODELS; SUPERSTRING THEORY; SUPERSYMMETRY