We propose a field theoretic framework for calculating the dependence of Rényi entropies on the shape of the entangling surface in a conformal field theory. Our approach rests on regarding the corresponding twist operator as a conformal defect and in particular, we define the displacement operator which implements small local deformations of the entangling surface. We identify a simple constraint between the coefficient defining the two-point function of the displacement operator and the conformal weight of the twist operator, which consolidates a number of distinct conjectures on the shape dependence of the Rényi entropy. As an example, using this approach, we examine a conjecture regarding the universal coefficient associated with a conical singularity in the entangling surface for CFTs in any number of spacetime dimensions. We also provide a general formula for the second order variation of the Rényi entropy arising from small deformations of a spherical entangling surface, extending Mezei’s results for the entanglement entropy.
Bibliographical notePublisher Copyright:
© 2016, The Author(s).
- Anomalies in Field and String Theories
- Conformal and W Symmetry
- Space-Time Symmetries
- Spacetime Singularities