Generations: three prints, in colour

  • Cohl FureyEmail author
Open Access


We point out a somewhat mysterious appearance of SUc(3) representations, which exhibit the behaviour of three full generations of standard model particles. These representations are found in the Clifford algebra ℂl(6), arising from the complex octonions. In this paper, we explain how this 64-complex-dimensional space comes about. With the algebra in place, we then identify generators of SU(3) within it. These SU(3) generators then act to partition the remaining part of the 64-dimensional Clifford algebra into six triplets, six singlets, and their antiparticles. That is, the algebra mirrors the chromodynamic structure of exactly three generations of the standard model’s fermions. Passing from particle to antiparticle, or vice versa, requires nothing more than effecting the complex conjugate, ∗: i ↦ − i. The entire result is achieved using only the eight-dimensional complex octonions as a single ingredient.


Beyond Standard Model QCD Gauge Symmetry 


Open Access

This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC-BY 4.0), which permits any use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author(s) and source are credited.


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© The Author(s) 2014

Open AccessThis article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (, which permits use, duplication, adaptation, distribution, and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Perimeter Institute for Theoretical PhysicsWaterlooCanada
  2. 2.University of WaterlooOntarioCanada

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