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High Energy Theory Seminar

Friday, October 25, 2013
11:00am to 12:00pm
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Lauritsen 469
Probing Induced Higher-Spin Gauge Theory
Benjamin Safdi, Princeton University,

I will discuss deformations of three-dimensional large N CFTs by
double-trace operators constructed from spin s single-trace operators
of dimension \Delta. These theories possess UV fixed points, and I
calculate the change of the 3-sphere free energy \delta F= F_{UV}-
F_{IR}. To describe the UV fixed point using the dual AdS_4 space I
will modify the boundary conditions on the spin s field in the bulk;
this approach produces \delta F in agreement with the field theory
calculations. If the spin s operator is a conserved current, then the
fixed point is described by an induced parity invariant conformal spin
s gauge theory.  When the original CFT is that of N conformal complex
scalar or fermion fields, the U(N) singlet sector of the induced 3-d
gauge theory is dual to Vasiliev's theory in AdS_4 with alternate
boundary conditions on the spin s massless gauge field. I will test
this correspondence by calculating the leading term in \delta F for
large N.  I will also argue that the Weyl anomaly a-coefficients of
conformal spin s theories in even dimensions d, such as that of the
Weyl-squared gravity in d=4, can be efficiently calculated using
massless spin s fields in AdS_{d+1} with alternate boundary
conditions.  I will use these results to argue for the existence of a
new exactly conformal quantum theory of gravity coupled to higher spin
gauge fields in d = 4.

For more information, please contact Carol Silberstein by email at or visit