The gravity of dark vortices: effective field theory for branes and strings carrying localized flux Academic Article uri icon

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abstract

  • A Nielsen-Olesen vortex usually sits in an environment that expels the flux that is confined to the vortex, so flux is not present both inside and outside. We construct vortices for which this is not true, where the flux carried by the vortex also permeates the `bulk' far from the vortex. The idea is to mix the vortex's internal gauge flux with an external flux using off-diagonal kinetic mixing. Such `dark' vortices could play a phenomenological role in models with both cosmic strings and a dark gauge sector. When coupled to gravity they also provide explicit ultra-violet completions for codimension-two brane-localized flux, which arises in extra-dimensional models when the same flux that stabilizes extra-dimensional size is also localized on space-filling branes situated around the extra dimensions. We derive simple formulae for observables such as defect angle, tension, localized flux and on-vortex curvature when coupled to gravity, and show how all of these are insensitive to much of the microscopic details of the solutions, and are instead largely dictated by low-energy quantities. We derive the required effective description in terms of a world-sheet brane action, and derive the matching conditions for its couplings. We consider the case where the dimensions transverse to the bulk compactify, and determine how the on- and off-vortex curvatures and other bulk features depend on the vortex properties. We find that the brane-localized flux does not gravitate, but just renormalizes the tension in a magnetic-field independent way. The existence of an explicit UV completion puts the effective description of these models on a more precise footing, verifying that brane-localized flux can be consistent with sensible UV physics and resolving some apparent paradoxes that can arise with a naive (but commonly used) delta-function treatment of the brane's localization within the bulk.

publication date

  • November 2015