The Conformal Anomaly in bCFT from Momentum Space Perspective


Authors: Vladimir Prochazka

Preprint number: UUITP-11/18

Abstract: We study the momentum space representation of energy-momentum tensor two-point functions on a space with a planar boundary in d=3. We show that non-conservation of momentum in the direction perpendicular to the boundary allows for new phenomena compared to the boundary-less case. Namely we demonstrate how local contact terms arise when the correlators are expanded in the regime where parallel momentum is small compared to the perpendicular one, which corresponds to the near-boundary limit. By exploring two-derivative counterterms involving components of Riemann tensor we identify a finite, scheme-independent part of the two-point function. We then relate this component to the conformal anomaly $c_∂$ proportional to the boundary curvature R̂ . In the formalism of this paper $c_∂$ arises due to integrating out bulk modes coupled to the curved space, which generate local contributions the effective action at the boundary. To calculate the anomaly in specific (free-field) examples, we combine the method of images with Feynman diagrammatic techniques and propose a general methodology for perturbative computations of this type. The framework is tested by computing $c_∂$ on the explicit example of free scalar with mixed boundary conditions where we find agreement with the literature.