Point particle motion in topologically nontrivial spacetimes

Andrew Matas, Daniel Müller, Glenn Starkman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


It is well known that compactifying a space can break symmetries that are present in the covering space. In this paper we study the effects of such topological symmetry breaking on point particle motion when the particle is coupled to a massless field on the space. For a torus topology where Lorentz invariance is broken but translation invariance is maintained, particles can move at a constant velocity through the space; however, nonlocal, velocity-dependent forces arise whenever the particle is accelerated. For a topology where translation invariance is broken, such as the Klein bottle, interactions with the massless field generate an effective potential as a function of position. The potential creates special stable points in the space, and prevents constant velocity motion. The latter would appear to be the generic case. This class of effects may be applicable whenever a localized object moves through a compactified bulk, such as in brane-world cosmology, or some condensed matter systems.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number026005
JournalPhysical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jul 13 2015


Dive into the research topics of 'Point particle motion in topologically nontrivial spacetimes'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this