In this review we present the salient features of dynamical chaos in classical gauge theories with spatially homogeneous fields. The chaotic behaviour displayed by both abelian and non-abelian gauge theories and the effect of the Higgs term in both cases are discussed. The role of the Chern-Simons term in these theories is examined in detail. Whereas, in the abelian case, the pure Chern-Simons-Higgs system is integrable, addition of the Maxwell term renders the system chaotic. In contrast, the non-abelian Chern-Simons-Higgs system is chaotic both in the presence and the absence of the Yang-Mills term. We support our conclusions with numerical studies on plots of phase trajectories and Lyapunov exponents. Analytical tests of integrability such as the Painlevé criterion are carried out for these theories. The role of the various terms in the Hamiltonians for the abelian Higgs, Yang-Mills-Higgs and Yang-Mills-Chern-Simons-Higgs systems with spatially homogeneous fields, in determining the nature of order-disorder transitions is highlighted, and the effects are shown to be counter-intuitive in the last-named system.
Volume 93 | Issue 6
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