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String Theory and M-Theory

Book Description

String theory is one of the most exciting and challenging areas of modern theoretical physics. This book guides the reader from the basics of string theory to recent developments. It introduces the basics of perturbative string theory, world-sheet supersymmetry, space-time supersymmetry, conformal field theory and the heterotic string, before describing modern developments, including D-branes, string dualities and M-theory. It then covers string geometry and flux compactifications, applications to cosmology and particle physics, black holes in string theory and M-theory, and the microscopic origin of black-hole entropy. It concludes with Matrix theory, the AdS/CFT duality and its generalizations. This book is ideal for graduate students and researchers in modern string theory, and will make an excellent textbook for a one-year course on string theory. It contains over 120 exercises with solutions, and over 200 homework problems with solutions available on a password protected website for lecturers at www.cambridge.org/9780521860697.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. Title
  3. Copyright
  4. Dedication
  5. Contents
  6. Preface
  7. 1 Introduction
    1. 1.1 Historical origins
    2. 1.2 General features
    3. 1.3 Basic string theory
    4. 1.4 Modern developments in superstring theory
  8. 2 The bosonic string
    1. 2.1 p-brane actions
    2. 2.2 The string action
    3. 2.3 String sigma-model action: the classical theory
    4. 2.4 Canonical quantization
    5. 2.5 Light-cone gauge quantization
  9. 3 Conformai field theory and string interactions
    1. 3.1 Conformai field theory
    2. 3.2 BRST quantization
    3. 3.3 Background fields
    4. 3.4 Vertex operators
    5. 3.5 The structure of string perturbation theory
    6. 3.6 The linear-dilaton vacuum and noncritical strings
    7. 3.7 Witten’s open-string field theory
  10. 4 Strings with world-sheet supersymmetry
    1. 4.1 Ramond–Neveu–Schwarz strings
    2. 4.2 Global world-sheet supersymmetry
    3. 4.3 Constraint equations and conformal invariance
    4. 4.4 Boundary conditions and mode expansions
    5. 4.5 Canonical quantization of the RNS string
    6. 4.6 Light-cone gauge quantization of the RNS string
    7. 4.7 SCFT and BRST
  11. 5 Strings with space-time supersymmetry
    1. 5.1 The D0-brane action
    2. 5.2 The supersymmetric string action
    3. 5.3 Quantization of the GS action
    4. 5.4 Gauge anomalies and their cancellation
  12. 6 T-duality and D-branes
    1. 6.1 The bosonic string and Dp-branes
    2. 6.2 D-branes in type II superstring theories
    3. 6.3 Type I superstring theory
    4. 6.4 T-duality in the presence of background fields
    5. 6.5 World-volume actions for D-branes
  13. 7 The heterotic string
    1. 7.1 Nonabelian gauge symmetry in string theory
    2. 7.2 Fermionic construction of the heterotic string
    3. 7.3 Toroidal compactification
    4. 7.4 Bosonic construction of the heterotic string
  14. 8 M-theory and string duality
    1. 8.1 Low-energy effective actions
    2. 8.2 S-duality
    3. 8.3 M-theory
    4. 8.4 M-theory dualities
  15. 9 String geometry
    1. 9.1 Orbifolds
    2. 9.2 Calabi–Yau manifolds: mathematical properties
    3. 9.3 Examples of Calabi–Yau manifolds
    4. 9.4 Calabi–Yau compactifications of the heterotic string
    5. 9.5 Deformations of Calabi–Yau manifolds
    6. 9.6 Special geometry
    7. 9.7 Type IIA and type IIB on Calabi–Yau three-folds
    8. 9.8 Nonperturbative effects in Calabi–Yau compactifications
    9. 9.9 Mirror symmetry
    10. 9.10 Heterotic string theory on Calabi—Yau three-folds
    11. 9.11 K3 compactifications and more string dualities
    12. 9.12 Manifolds with G2 and Spin(7) holonomy
  16. 10 Flux compactifications
    1. 10.1 Flux compactifications and Calabi–Yau four-folds
    2. 10.2 Flux compactifications of the type IIB theory
    3. 10.3 Moduli stabilization
    4. 10.4 Fluxes, torsion and heterotic strings
    5. 10.5 The strongly coupled heterotic string
    6. 10.6 The landscape
    7. 10.7 Fluxes and cosmology
  17. 11 Black holes in string theory
    1. 11.1 Black holes in general relativity
    2. 11.2 Black-hole thermodynamics
    3. 11.3 Black holes in string theory
    4. 11.4 Statistical derivation of the entropy
    5. 11.5 The attractor mechanism
    6. 11.6 Small BPS black holes in four dimensions
  18. 12 Gauge theory/string theory dualities
    1. 12.1 Black-brane solutions in string theory and M-theory
    2. 12.2 Matrix theory
    3. 12.3 The AdS/CFT correspondence
    4. 12.4 Gauge/string duality for the conifold and generalizations
    5. 12.5 Plane-wave space-times and their duals
    6. 12.6 Geometric transitions
  19. Bibliographic discussion
  20. Bibliography
  21. Index