madhusudhan raman

senior research fellow
theoretical physics group
institute of mathematical sciences

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Basic Conformal Field Theory

January - April '14

With a little help from Dr. Sujay K. Ashok, this seminar will discuss conformal field theories from the ground up! There is, at the moment, no fixed syllabus or list of topics we'd like to cover. We plan to tailor the topics discussed to reflect our interests over time.

Each meeting will go on for an hour and a half. We meet every Thursday at 9:30 am in Hall 123.


Date Speaker Topic Notes/References
3rd April N. Balakrishnan Operator Formalism: Bosons and Fermions Ch. 6.3, 6.4 of [1]
27th March Dr. Sanjit Das The Weyl Anomaly Ch. 6 of [4], [5]
20th March Dr. Vivek M. Vyas The Heat Kernel and The Trace Anomaly Ch. 5.A, 5.B of [1]
13th March Renjan John Central Charges, the Virasoro Algebra and Radial Quantization Ch. 6.1, 6.2 of [1]
6th March M Conformal Ward Identities and Operator Product Expansions Ch. 5.2, 5.3 of [1]
20th February M The Conformal Group in Two Dimensions Ch. 5.1 of [1]
13th February Renjan John Conformal Invariance and Quantum Fields Ch. 4.3 of [1], [2]
6th February Dheeraj Kumar Mishra Energy-Momentum Tensors and Tracelessness Ch. 4.2 of [1]
23rd January Dheeraj Kumar Mishra The Conformal Group II: Representations in \( d \) Dimensions Ch. 4.2 of [1], [3]
16th January N. Balakrishnan The Conformal Group I: Generators and Their Algebra Ch. 4.1 of [1]


  1. P. Di Francesco, P. Mathieu, D. Senechal: Conformal Field Theory, Springer (1999).
  2. S. Minwalla: Restrictions Imposed by Superconformal Invariance on Quantum Field Theories, Adv. Theor. Math. Phys. 2 (1998), 781-846.
    Preprint available at arXiv:hep-th/9712074.
  3. G. Mack, A. Salam: Finite-Component Field Representations of the Conformal Group, Ann. Phys. 53 (1969), 174-202.
  4. N. D. Birrell, P. C. W. Davies: Quantum Fields in Curved Space, Cambridge University Press (1984).
  5. M. J. Duff: Observations on Conformal Anomalies, Nucl. Phys. B 125 (1977), 334–348.