Anomaly cancellation in extended phase space. The chiral Schwinger model

Moshe Moshe*, Yaron Oz

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Quantum mechanically broken symmetries can be restored by properly extending the initial phase space to include extra degrees of freedom. The chiral Schwinger model is an ideal example in which general methods for restoration of a quantum mechanically broken symmetry can be studied. Here we construct an extended phase space, following recent ideas of Batalin and Fradkin in which quantum mechanically induced second-class constraints in the original system are made first class in the corresponding symmetric system. In the extended phase space, the anomalous theory can be viewed as a gauge fixed (a "unitary gauge") version of the new symmetric theory. Once this corresponding symmetric theory is determined, one can exploit the restored gauge symmetry and the freedom of fixing the gauge. Different gauges can be employed which reflect different physical aspects of the theory in a more transparent way than in the original gauge fixed (anomalous) theory. The particular restoration of symmetry used here is compared to the more conventional approach of adding a Wess-Zumino term to the action or adding extra right-handed fermions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)145-152
Number of pages8
JournalPhysics Letters B
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - 22 Jun 1989
Externally publishedYes


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