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Boundary terms in quantum field theory and the spin structure of QCD


Lowdon, Peter (2014). Boundary terms in quantum field theory and the spin structure of QCD. Nuclear Physics, Section B, 889:801-816.

Abstract

Determining how boundary terms behave in a quantum field theory (QFT) is crucial for understanding the dynamics of the theory. Nevertheless, boundary terms are often neglected using classical-type arguments which are no longer justified in the full quantum theory. In this paper we address this problem by establishing a necessary and sufficient condition for arbitrary spatial boundary terms to vanish in a general QFT. As an application of this condition we examine the issue of whether the angular momentum operator in Quantum Chromodynamics (QCD) has a physically meaningful quark-gluon decomposition. Using this condition it appears as though this is not the case, and that it is in fact the non-perturbative QCD structure which prevents the possibility of such a decomposition.

Abstract

Determining how boundary terms behave in a quantum field theory (QFT) is crucial for understanding the dynamics of the theory. Nevertheless, boundary terms are often neglected using classical-type arguments which are no longer justified in the full quantum theory. In this paper we address this problem by establishing a necessary and sufficient condition for arbitrary spatial boundary terms to vanish in a general QFT. As an application of this condition we examine the issue of whether the angular momentum operator in Quantum Chromodynamics (QCD) has a physically meaningful quark-gluon decomposition. Using this condition it appears as though this is not the case, and that it is in fact the non-perturbative QCD structure which prevents the possibility of such a decomposition.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Physics Institute
Dewey Decimal Classification:530 Physics
Language:English
Date:2014
Deposited On:23 Feb 2015 13:19
Last Modified:08 Dec 2017 11:29
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:0550-3213
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.nuclphysb.2014.11.004

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