Localization of unitary braid group representations Institutional Repository Document uri icon


  • Governed by locality, we explore a connection between unitary braid group representations associated to a unitary $R$-matrix and to a simple object in a unitary braided fusion category. Unitary $R$-matrices, namely unitary solutions to the Yang-Baxter equation, afford explicitly local unitary representations of braid groups. Inspired by topological quantum computation, we study whether or not it is possible to reassemble the irreducible summands appearing in the unitary braid group representations from a unitary braided fusion category with possibly different positive multiplicities to get representations that are uniformly equivalent to the ones from a unitary R-matrix. Such an equivalence will be called a localization of the unitary braid group representations. We show that the q=exp(pi i/6) specialization of the unitary Jones representation of the braid groups can be localized by a unitary $9 imes 9$ R-matrix. Actually this Jones representation is the first one in a family of theories (SO(N),2) for an odd prime N>1, which are conjectured to be localizable. We formulate several general conjectures and discuss possible connections to physics and computer science.

author list (cited authors)

  • Rowell, E. C., & Wang, Z.

complete list of authors

  • Rowell, Eric C||Wang, Zhenghan

publication date

  • September 2010