Advanced Topics in Theoretical Physics

Advanced Topics in Theoretical Physics is a regular lecture series on topics ranging from quantum field theory, string theory, gravity and condensed matter physics. These will two hour long detailed lectures (multi-part if necessary) on blackboard. The lectures will be useful for undergraduate and graduate students as well as faculty interested in theoretical and mathematical physics.

Topological Strings-I (Spinors in various Dimensions)

Amer Iqbal (AS-SMS & LUMS)

3:00PM – 5:00PM, April 21, 2017

Spanning over a few lectures, Amer Iqbal will introduce the world of topological strings which are some extremely useful and fascinating objects in a theoretical physicist’s inventory.
In our quest to understand topological strings, their properties and applications we will begin with a review of spinors in various dimensions.We will discuss the spin groups, their relation with orthogonal groups and irreducible spin representations. We will pay special attention to spinors in two dimensions.

Instantons and Quantum Tunneling

Pervez Hoodbhoy (FCCU & QAU)

5:30PM – 7:30PM, March 28 2017

This lecture will be on a fairly simple but surprisingly rich topic – tunneling in a double well potential using the method of pseudoparticles or instantons. Although instantons are crucial in quantum field theory, even in quantum mechanics they are an important means of systematically improving non-perturbative calculations. It turns out that there are tunneling phenomena in condensed matter physics that people seem not to have paid attention to but with possibly important consequences. Students will benefit from this lecture only if they read about Feynman’s path integral method before coming to the lecture.

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Lorentz Invariance in Quantum Field Theory — II

Babar Qureshi (LUMS)

3–5PM, March 10, 2017

In the second lecture on the topic, I will discuss Dirac, Weyl and Majorana Lagrangians, coupling of electromagnetic field to matter, equations of motion, discrete symmetries, Noether’s theorem and conserved currents associated with various symmetries of these Lagrangians.

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Lorentz Invariance in Quantum Field Theory

Babar Qureshi (LUMS)

3–5PM, March 03, 2017

In this lecture, I will discuss implementation of Lorentz symmetry in field theories. I will discuss action principles in general, Lorentz symmetry and its representations and construction of Lorentz invariant Lagrangians containing scalar, spinor and vector fields.

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Magnetic Monopoles in Non-Abelian Gauge Theories

Babar Qureshi (LUMS)

3–5PM, February 17, 2017

Lecture will discuss the topological origin of magnetic monopoles in non-abelian gauge theories, t’Hooft-Polyakov solution, BPS bound, moduli space of monopoles and its quantization and Witten effect.

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