Moduli Space of (0,2) Conformal Field Theories

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2016

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Bertolini, Marco

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Abstract

In this thesis we study aspects of (0,2) superconformal field theories (SCFTs), which are suitable for compactification of the heterotic string. In the first part, we study a class of (2,2) SCFTs obtained by fibering a Landau-Ginzburg (LG) orbifold CFT over a compact K\"ahler base manifold. While such models are naturally obtained as phases in a gauged linear sigma model (GLSM), our construction is independent of such an embedding. We discuss the general properties of such theories and present a technique to study the massless spectrum of the associated heterotic compactification. We test the validity of our method by applying it to hybrid phases of GLSMs and comparing spectra among the phases. In the second part, we turn to the study of the role of accidental symmetries in two-dimensional (0,2) SCFTs obtained by RG flow from (0,2) LG theories. These accidental symmetries are ubiquitous, and, unlike in the case of (2,2) theories, their identification is key to correctly identifying the IR fixed point and its properties. We develop a number of tools that help to identify such accidental symmetries in the context of (0,2) LG models and provide a conjecture for a toric structure of the SCFT moduli space in a large class of models. In the final part, we study the stability of heterotic compactifications described by (0,2) GLSMs with respect to worldsheet instanton corrections to the space-time superpotential following the work of Beasley and Witten. We show that generic models elude the vanishing theorem proved there, and may not determine supersymmetric heterotic vacua. We then construct a subclass of GLSMs for which a vanishing theorem holds.

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Bertolini, Marco (2016). Moduli Space of (0,2) Conformal Field Theories. Dissertation, Duke University. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/12834.

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