Date of Award

Spring 4-1-2021

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Physics

First Advisor

Poland, David

Abstract

In this thesis, we analyze unitary conformal field theories in three dimensional spaces by applying analytic conformal bootstrap techniques to correlation functions of non-scalar operators, in particular Majorana fermions. Via the analysis of these correlation functions, we access several sectors in the spectrum of conformal field theories that have been previously unexplored with analytic methods, and we provide new data for several operator families. In the first part of the thesis, we achieve this by the large spin expansions that have been traditionally used in the conformal bootstrap program for scalar correlators, whereas in the second part we carry out the computations by combining several analytic tools that have been recently developed such as weight shifting operators, harmonic analysis for the Euclidean conformal group, and the Lorentzian inversion formula. We compare these methods and demonstrate the superiority of the latter by computing nonperturbative correction terms that are inaccessible in the former. A better analytic grasp of the spectrum of fermionic conformal field theories can help in many directions including making new precise analytic predictions for supersymmetric models, computing the binding energies of fermions in curved space, and describing quantum phase transitions in condensed matter systems with emergent Lorentz symmetry.

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