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Alexander M. Polyakov (born 27 September 1945) is a theoretical physicist, formerly at the Landau Institute in Moscow, currently at Princeton University.

Important discoveries

He is known for a number of basic contributions to quantum field theory, including work on what is now called the 't Hooft-Polyakov monopole in non-abelian gauge theory, independent from Gerard 't Hooft[1][2][3] [4] [5] [6]. His paper Infinite conformal symmetry in two-dimensional quantum field theory, with Alexander Belavin, and Alexander Zamolodchikov, from 1984[4], has classic status [7]. His path integral formulation of string theory had profound and lasting impacts in the conceptual and mathematical understanding of the theory. He also played an important role in elucidating the conceptual framework behind renormalization independent of Kenneth Wilson's Nobel prize winning work. He formulated pioneering ideas in gauge/string duality long before the breakthrough of AdS/CFT using D-branes. Other insightful conjectures that came years or even decades before active work by others include integrability of gauge and string theories and certain ideas about turbulence.

Honors and Awards

Alexander Polyakov was awarded the Dirac Medal and the Dannie Heineman Prize for Mathematical Physics in 1986, the Lorentz Medal in 1994, and the Oskar Klein Medal in 1996.

He has been elected to the Russian Academy of Sciences in 1984[8] and the US National Academy of Sciences (NAS) in 2005[9] [10].


1. ^ Belavin AA, Polyakov AM, Schwartz AS, Tyupkin YS (1975). "Pseudoparticle solutions of the Yang-Mills equations". Phys. Lett. B 59 (1): 85-7.
2. ^ Polyakov AM (1977). "Quark confinement and topology of gauge theories". Nucl. Phys. B 120 (3): 429-58.
3. ^ Polyakov AM (1981). "Quantum geometry of bosonic strings". Phys. Lett. B 103 (3): 207-10.
4. ^ a b Belavin AA, Polyakov AM, Zamolodchikov AB (1984). "Infinite conformal symmetry in two-dimensional quantum field theory". Nucl. Phys. B 241 (2): 333-80.
5. ^ Knizhnik VG, Polyakov AM, Zamolodchikov AB (1988). "Fractal structure of 2d—quantum gravity". Mod. Phys. Lett. A 3 (8): 819-26.
6. ^ Gubser SS, Klebanov IR, Polyakov AM (1998). "Gauge theory correlators from non-critical string theory". Phys. Lett. B 428 (1- 2): 105-14.
7. ^ (2006) "Princeton celebrates Polyakov's 60th". CERN Courier (Mar 1): 2.
8. ^ Alexander M. Polyakov. Site of RAS
9. ^ Polyakov, Alexandre. NAS Section: Physics
10. ^ Dirac Medalist Elected to NAS. ICTP News. 9/5/2005

See also

* Polyakov action
* 't Hooft-Polyakov monopole
* Belavin-Polyakov-Schwarz-Tyupkin instantons
* QCD vacuum
* Migdal-Polyakov conformal bootstrap
* Polyakov's Liouville theory
* Polyakov strings
* AdS/CFT correspondence


* Dirac Medal 1986 citation

* Departmental homepage at Princeton

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