Chapter

Lattice field theory fundamentals

M. Pilar HernÁndez

in Modern Perspectives in Lattice QCD: Quantum Field Theory and High Performance Computing

Published in print August 2011 | ISBN: 9780199691609
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191731792 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199691609.003.0001

Series: Lecture Notes of the Les Houches Summer School

Lattice field theory fundamentals

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This chapter reviews the basic building blocks of the regularization of Quantum Field Theories (QFT) on a space-time lattice. It assumes some familiarity with QFT in the continuum. In an introductory section, the path integral formulation is reviewed, focusing on important aspects such as the transfer matrix, the relation of correlation functions and physical observables, the perturbative expansion, and the key issue of renormalization and the Wilsonian renormalization group. It then considers in detail the lattice formulation of scalar, fermion and gauge field theories, paying careful attention to their physical interpretation, and the continuum limit. The difficulty of discretizing chiral fermions is discussed in detail, and various fermion discretizations are described. The strong coupling expansion is introduced in the context of lattice Yang-Mills theory and the criteria for confinement and for the presence of a mass gap are presented. It concludes with a description of Wilson's formulation of lattice QCD and a brief overview of its applications.

Keywords: Quantum Field Theory; Renormalization; Lattice Field Theory; Correlation Functions; Transfer Matrix; Perturbation Theory; Chiral Fermions; Strong Coupling Expansion; Confinement; Triviality; Hadron Spectrum

Chapter.  40771 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Mathematical and Statistical Physics

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