• Register
PhysicsOverflow is a next-generation academic platform for physicists and astronomers, including a community peer review system and a postgraduate-level discussion forum analogous to MathOverflow.

Welcome to PhysicsOverflow! PhysicsOverflow is an open platform for community peer review and graduate-level Physics discussion.

Please help promote PhysicsOverflow ads elsewhere if you like it.


Migration to Bielefeld University was successful!

Please vote for this year's PhysicsOverflow ads!

Please do help out in categorising submissions. Submit a paper to PhysicsOverflow!

... see more

Tools for paper authors

Submit paper
Claim Paper Authorship

Tools for SE users

Search User
Reclaim SE Account
Request Account Merger
Nativise imported posts
Claim post (deleted users)
Import SE post

Users whose questions have been imported from Physics Stack Exchange, Theoretical Physics Stack Exchange, or any other Stack Exchange site are kindly requested to reclaim their account and not to register as a new user.

Public \(\beta\) tools

Report a bug with a feature
Request a new functionality
404 page design
Send feedback


(propose a free ad)

Site Statistics

132 submissions , 111 unreviewed
3,777 questions , 1,329 unanswered
4,724 answers , 19,950 comments
1,470 users with positive rep
467 active unimported users
More ...

Characters of $\widehat{\mathfrak{su}}(2)_k$ and WZW coset construction

+ 6 like - 0 dislike

I am currently studying affine Lie algebras and the WZW coset construction. I have a minor technical problem in calculating the (specialized) character of $\widehat{\mathfrak{su}}(2)_k$ for an affine weight $\hat{\lambda} = [k-\lambda_1,\lambda_1]$. Given the generalized theta function $$\Theta_{\lambda_1}^{(k)}(z,\tau) = \sum_{n\in\mathbb Z}e^{-2\pi i\left[knz+\frac 12\lambda_1 z-kn^2\tau-n\lambda_1\tau- \lambda_1^2\tau/4k\right]}$$ I want to evaluate $$\chi^{(k)}_{\lambda_1} = \frac{\Theta^{(k+2)}_{\lambda_1+1} - \Theta^{(k+2)}_{-\lambda_1-1}}{\Theta^{(2)}_1 - \Theta^{(2)}_{-1}}$$ at $z=0$. Putting $z=0$ directly, both the numerator and denomerator vanish (since there is no difference between $\lambda_1$ and $-\lambda_1$ due to the sum). So my question is; what is the appropriate way to take the limit $z\rightarrow 0$? [This is from Di Francesco et al, section 14.4.2, page 585]. The result should be $$\chi^{(k)}_{\lambda_1} = q^{(\lambda_1+1)^2/4(k+2)-\frac 18}\frac{\sum_{n\in\mathbb Z}\left[\lambda_1 + 1 + 2n(k+2)\right]q^{n[\lambda_1+1+2(k+2)n]}}{\sum_{n\in\mathbb Z}\left[1+4n\right]q^{n[1+2n]}}$$ where $q=e^{2\pi i\tau}$.

Since I fear the solution to my question is rather trivial, I have a bonus question. Do you know any paper which works out the details for the coset $$\frac{\widehat{\mathfrak{su}}(N)_k\oplus \widehat{\mathfrak{su}}(N)_1}{\widehat{\mathfrak{su}}(N)_{k+1}}$$ for arbitrary $N$? I am thinking about something like what Di Francesco et al. does in section 18.3 for $N=2$. It would be nice if the reference relates this to $\mathcal W$-algebras.

This post has been migrated from (A51.SE)

asked Oct 26, 2011 in Theoretical Physics by Heidar (855 points) [ revision history ]
retagged Mar 25, 2014 by dimension10

1 Answer

+ 1 like - 0 dislike

I found the answer to my problem, and as expected it is embarrassingly trivial. Put $z=\epsilon$ and expand everything to first order, then the result comes out directly.

With respect to references, I found that the review paper $\mathcal W$ symmetry in conformal field theory contains a discussion of these kind of coset Wess-Zumino-Witten models. Furthermore papers on the newly proposed higher spin AdS$_3$/CFT$_2$ duality contains some discussions on this (for example arXiv:1011.2986, arXiv:1108.3077 and arXiv:1106.1897). But I still welcome better references!

This post has been migrated from (A51.SE)
answered Oct 28, 2011 by Heidar (855 points) [ no revision ]

Your answer

Please use answers only to (at least partly) answer questions. To comment, discuss, or ask for clarification, leave a comment instead.
To mask links under text, please type your text, highlight it, and click the "link" button. You can then enter your link URL.
Please consult the FAQ for as to how to format your post.
This is the answer box; if you want to write a comment instead, please use the 'add comment' button.
Live preview (may slow down editor)   Preview
Your name to display (optional):
Privacy: Your email address will only be used for sending these notifications.
Anti-spam verification:
If you are a human please identify the position of the character covered by the symbol $\varnothing$ in the following word:
Then drag the red bullet below over the corresponding character of our banner. When you drop it there, the bullet changes to green (on slow internet connections after a few seconds).
To avoid this verification in future, please log in or register.

user contributions licensed under cc by-sa 3.0 with attribution required

Your rights