Strings, vortex rings, and modes of instability

Steven S. Gubser, Revant Nayar, Sarthak Parikh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


We treat string propagation and interaction in the presence of a background Neveu-Schwarz three-form field strength, suitable for describing vortex rings in a superfluid or low-viscosity normal fluid. A circular vortex ring exhibits instabilities which have been recognized for many years, but whose precise boundaries we determine for the first time analytically in the small core limit. Two circular vortices colliding head-on exhibit stronger instabilities which cause splitting into many small vortices at late times. We provide an approximate analytic treatment of these instabilities and show that the most unstable wavelength is parametrically larger than a dynamically generated length scale which in many hydrodynamic systems is close to the cutoff. We also summarize how the string construction we discuss can be derived from the Gross-Pitaevskii Lagrangian, and also how it compares to the action for giant gravitons.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)156-180
Number of pages25
JournalNuclear Physics B
StatePublished - Mar 1 2015

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics


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