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Interpreting Supersymmetry

Baker, David John (2018) Interpreting Supersymmetry. [Preprint]

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Abstract

Supersymmetry in quantum physics is a mathematically simple phenomenon that raises deep foundational questions. To motivate these questions, I present a toy model, the supersymmetric harmonic oscillator, and its superspace representation, which adds extra anticommuting dimensions to spacetime. I then explain and comment on three foundational questions about this superspace formalism: whether superspace is a substance, whether it should count as spatiotemporal, and whether it is a necessary postulate if one wants to use the theory to unify bosons and fermions.


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Item Type: Preprint
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Baker, David Johndjbaker@umich.edu
Keywords: supersymmetry, spacetime functionalism, superspace, substantivalism, quantum field theory
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Physics > Quantum Gravity
Specific Sciences > Physics > Quantum Field Theory
Specific Sciences > Physics > Quantum Mechanics
Specific Sciences > Physics > Relativity Theory
Specific Sciences > Physics > Symmetries/Invariances
Depositing User: David Baker
Date Deposited: 08 Oct 2018 13:17
Last Modified: 08 Oct 2018 13:17
Item ID: 15119
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Physics > Quantum Gravity
Specific Sciences > Physics > Quantum Field Theory
Specific Sciences > Physics > Quantum Mechanics
Specific Sciences > Physics > Relativity Theory
Specific Sciences > Physics > Symmetries/Invariances
Date: 2018
URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/15119

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