Rui Xian Siew - Summer Intern - The Chinese University of Hong Kong 

Summer Research Advisor: Professor Sylvester James Gates 

Can you share about the research you worked on this summer?

In particle physics, the symmetries that a system of particles possesses determine the dynamics (Lagrangian) of the system. The type of symmetry that transforms the bosons into fermions and vice versa is called Supersymmetry, which is the background setting of my summer research. The set of all possible (super)symmetries, together with their action on spacetime, forms a (super) Lie group. It is generally more convenient to work with the Lie algebra of a Lie group than the group elements because the Lie algebra elements interact with each other linearly. The type of symmetries investigated in my research include the conformal symmetry, which is closely related to Conformal Field Theories (CFT) that are attracting more and more attention nowadays due to the enigmatic Ads/CFT correspondence. 

My research aims to construct a vector field representation of a super Lie algebra called the Superconformal algebra (a super Lie algebra that includes the conformal algebra as a subalgebra) that acts on a Superspace with ordinary Spacetime dimension d> 6. This is far from trivial because is known that Superconformal algebra doesn't exist for d>6, and my team is trying to bypass this obstacle.

What was a fun experience you had this summer while at Brown?

In June I attended the SSTPRS lectures. Every morning, before the start of the lecture, a student had to tell an interesting/funny story which could be totally unrelated to physics. As a typical Asian student, I've never experienced anything like this in a classroom, and I think it was fun.