Quiver subtractions

Cabrera, Santiago  (0000 0001 2113 8111, Theoretical Physics, The Blackett Laboratory, Imperial College London, London, SW7 2AZ, United Kingdom) ; Hanany, Amihay (0000 0001 2113 8111, Theoretical Physics, The Blackett Laboratory, Imperial College London, London, SW7 2AZ, United Kingdom)

05 September 2018

Abstract: We study the vacuum structure of gauge theories with eight supercharges. It has been recently discovered that in the Higgs branch of 5 d and 6 d SQCD theories with eight supercharges, the new massless states, arising when the gauge coupling is taken to infinity, can be described in terms of Coulomb branches of 3 d N = 4 $$ \mathcal{N}=4 $$ quiver gauge theories. The description of this new phenomenon draws from the ideas discovered in the analysis of nilpotent orbits as Higgs and Coulomb branches of 3 d theories and promotes the Higgs mechanism known as the Kraft-Procesi transition to the status of a new operation between quivers. This is the quiver subtraction . This paper establishes this operation formally and examines some immediate consequences. One is the extension of the physical realization of Kraft-Procesi transitions from the classical to the exceptional Lie algebras. Another result is the extension from special nilpotent orbits to non-special ones. One further consequence is the analysis of the effect in 5 d N = 1 $$ \mathcal{N}=1 $$ SQCD of integrating out a massive quark while the gauge coupling remains infinite. In general, the subtraction of quivers sheds light on the different types of singularities within the Coulomb branch and the structure of the massless states that arise at those singular points; including the nature of the new Higgs branches that open up. This allows for a systematic analysis of mixed branches of 3 d N = 4 $$ \mathcal{N}=4 $$ quivers that do not necessarily have a simple embedding in string theory. The subtraction of two quivers is an extremely simple resource for the theoretical physicist interested in the vacuum structure of gauge theories, and yet its power is so remarkable that is bound to play a crucial role in the coming discoveries of new and exciting physics in 5 and 6 dimensions.


Published in: JHEP 1809 (2018) 008
Published by: Springer/SISSA
DOI: 10.1007/JHEP09(2018)008
arXiv: 1803.11205
License: CC-BY-4.0



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