Type of Work
Nuclear Physics B
Chern-Simons gauge theory, since its inception as a topological quantum field theory, has proved to be a rich source of understanding for knot invariants. In this work the theory is used to explore the definition of the expectation value of a network of Wilson lines — an embedded graph invariant. Using a generalization of the variational method, lowest-order results for invariants for graphs of arbitrary valence and general vertex tangent space structure are derived. Gauge invariant operators are introduced. Higher order results are found. The method used here provides a Vassiliev-type definition of graph invariants which depend on both the embedding of the graph and the group structure of the gauge theory. It is found that one need not frame individual vertices. However, without a global projection of the graph there is an ambiguity in the relation of the decomposition of distinct vertices. It is suggested that framing may be seen as arising from this ambiguity — as a way of relating frames at distinct vertices.
Major, Seth, "Embedded graph invariants in Chern-Simons theory" (1999). Hamilton Digital Commons.
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