Trigroups and M-theory

By John Huerta (CAMGSD, Instituto Superior Técnico, U. Lisboa)

A trigroup is a tricategory with one object and all 1-, 2- and 3-morphisms invertible [1]. M-theory is a mysterious branch of physics believed to unify the five 10D string theories and 11D supergravity. Without assuming any knowledge of physics, we will describe how the mathematics of M-theory leads naturally to a certain trigroup [2].


[1] N. Gurski, An algebraic theory of tricategories, Ph.D. thesis, Department of Mathematics, University of Chicago, 2006.

[2] J. Huerta, Division Algebras, Supersymmetry and Higher Gauge Theory, Ph.D. Thesis, Department of Mathematics, UC Riverside, 2011. Available as arXiv:1106.3385.