Authors
Noel Swanson
University of Delaware
Abstract
The CPT theorem states that any causal, Lorentz-invariant, thermodynamically well-behaved quantum field theory must also be invariant under a reflection symmetry that reverses the direction of time, flips spatial parity, and conjugates charge. Although its physical basis remains obscure, CPT symmetry appears to be necessary in order to unify quantum mechanics with relativity. This paper attempts to decipher the physical reasoning behind proofs of the CPT theorem in algebraic quantum field theory. Ultimately, CPT symmetry is linked to a systematic reversal of the C*-algebraic Lie product that encodes the generating relationship between observables and symmetries. In any physically reasonable relativistic quantum field theory it is always possible to systematically reverse this generating relationship while preserving the dynamics, spectra, and localization properties of physical systems. Rather than the product of three separate reflections, CPT symmetry is revealed to be a single global reflection of the theory’s state space.
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DOI 10.1016/j.shpsb.2019.06.004
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References found in this work BETA

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