We consider an interacting quantum field theory on a curved two-dimensional manifold that we construct by geometrically deforming a flat hexagonal lattice by the insertion of a defect. Depending on how the deformation is done, the resulting geometry acquires a locally nonvanishing curvature that can be either positive or negative. Fields propagating on this background are forced to satisfy boundary conditions modulated by the geometry and that can be assimilated by a nondynamical gauge field. We present an explicit example where curvature and boundary conditions compete in altering the way symmetry breaking takes place, resulting in a surprising behavior of the order parameter in the vicinity of the defect. The effect described here is expected to be generic and of relevance in a variety of situations.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)