A systematic study is made of the relevant degrees of freedom and the dynamics of quantum chromodynamics (QCD). We find that the dynamical properties of QCD are, to a large extent, a consequence of the structure of the vacuum arising from the tunneling between degenerate, classically stable, vacuums, and that the relevant degrees of freedom can be taken to be the Euclidean path histories that can be used to calculate the tunneling in the semiclassical approximation. This nonperturbative vacuum structure appears well suited to the major features of QCD, i.e., the dimensional transmutation that determines the size of the hadrons and the strong-interaction coupling constant, the source of dynamical chiral symmetry breaking, and the mechanism responsible for quark confinement.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Nuclear and High Energy Physics
- Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)