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Supergravity Field Theories and the Art of Constructing Them

  • Daniel Z. Freedman
Part of the Studies in the Natural Sciences book series (SNS, volume 12)

Abstract

During the past year Lagrangian field theories in four dimensional space-time have been developed which have a new gauge principle, namely, local supersymmetry. The gauge field of supersymmetry transformation is the spin 3/2 Rarita-Schwinger field and it necessarily occurs in these theories together with the vierbein field which describes gravitation. A variety of constructions of supergravity field theories have now been given which include vector, spinor, and scalar fields. Although none of them seems to apply directly to experiment, I take the attitude that they are all interesting because they are the basic constructions associated with a gauge principle of considerable mathematical elegance. In qualitative terms, what has been achieved is an extension of general relativity in which gravitation is closely linked with the fundamental concept of anti-commuting fermion fields. Unification of lower spin fields with the graviton occurs in some models, and supergravity practitioners hope that a corresponding unification of gravitation with other particle interactions can be achieved. Since there are as yet no signals from experiment that nature is aware of our efforts, we look for theoretical signals. The improved renormalizability situation in supergravity, which will be discussed by Peter van Nieuwenhuizen at this conference, may be one such signal.

Keywords

Gauge Field Contact Term Supersymmetry Transformation Internal Symmetry Cosmological Term 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1977

Authors and Affiliations

  • Daniel Z. Freedman
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute for Theoretical PhysicsState University of New York at Stony BrookStony BrookUSA

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