Homepage of Remigiusz Durka - practicly the theoretical physicist

"Research is what I'm doing when I don't know what I'm doing"

Last update Sptember 24, 2010 by RemiQ

Shortly about me:

  • My name is Remigiusz Durka. I've just obtained my Ph.D. degree after studies at Wrocław Institute for Theoretical Physics (if you have postdoc position for me I'll take it under serious consideration! :)
  • My updated Curriculum vitae (09.2012). My papers on SPIRES. Research statement on request.


  • My present research concerns black holes thermodynamics. I analyse the role of the topological invariants as the boundary terms in the regularization scheme for AdS spacetimes. My aim is to generalize formulas for the gravitational Noether charges (mass, angular momentum and entropy) using the framework of a constrained topological BF theory. This framework provides the most general form of action for the first order gravity containing Palatini action with negative cosmological constant, Holst term and topological Euler, Pontryagin and Nieh-Yan invariants. The canonical analysis involving Dirac constraint procedure and correctness of supersymmetric extension of the constrained topological BF theory were the subjects of my previous work. Parallel to this, I am also investigating gravity and supergravity corresponding to the modified anti-de Sitter algebra (so-called AdS-Maxwell algebra), motivated by the description of a particle in a constant electromagnetic background in curved AdS spacetime.

Personal info:

  • I was organizer of European Rubik's Cube Championships Wroclaw 2012 with 300 competitors (gallery!).
  • I have been honored with a number of scholarships (Max Born scholarship for Ph.D. students supported by the city of Wrocław (Dec 2011 - Aug 2012), New scholarship for young researchers of University of Wrocław in the first and second edition from 2nd and 1st place, respectively, in the ranking of Faculty of Physics and Astronomy, Science scholarship for excellent results on PhD studies (Oct 2010 - Jun 2012), and Scholarship of the Faculty of Physics and Astronomy for very good results on master studies (4 years).
  • List of my institute seminars: Wroclaw Institute (04.2010), Nordita Institute in Stockholm (11.2010)
  • List of my conference talks: Cracow (04.2010), Paris (10.2010), Wroclaw (06.2011), Prague (08.2011), Nuremberg-Erlangen (10.2011)
  • List of my institute seminars: Wroclaw Institute (04.2010), Nordita Institute in Stockholm (11.2010), Marseille (04.2012), Lodz (05.2012), Wrocław (05.2012)
  • I won first Prize for Best institute seminar in academic year 2009/2010 (Wroclaw)!
  • I have been in Stockholm as "Visiting PhD Student" at Nordita Institute (Oct-Nov 2010)
  • I've got my master degree in 2007. Earlier I have been for a half year in Amsterdam on Socrates Exchange Program in Universitet van Amsterdam, Vrije Univeristet, NIKHEF and also at Leiden Univesity.
  • In 2009 I was co-organizer of the XXV Max Born Symposium "The Planck Scale 2009" held in Wroclaw.
  • I've contributed to creation of the five dimensional Rubic cube and I was second person in the history of the Universe who solved it! I was first person who solved Rubic 4-simplex (4D pyramid) :)

My doctoral thesis:

ABSTRACT: Thesis provides an analysis of various aspects theory of gravity seen as a deformation of a topological SO(2,3) BF theory. Considered framework, originating from the 70's and known as MacDowell-Mansouri gravity, assures the most general form of action, containing the Einstein-Cartan action with a negative cosmological constant, the Holst term, and the topological Euler, Pontryagin and Nieh-Yan invariants. Main goal was to investigate the presence of Barbero-Immirzi parameter in the context of supergravity, as well as black hole thermodynamics arising from the gravitational Noether charges.

Presentation from the defence: 12 June 2012 (in Polish)

My papers and publications:

ABSTRACT: The framework of SO(3,2) constrained BF theory applied to gravity makes it possible to generalize formulas for gravitational diffeomorphic Noether charges (mass, angular momentum, and entropy). It extends Wald's approach to the case of first order gravity with a negative cosmological constant, the Holst modification and the topological terms (Nieh-Yan, Euler, and Pontryagin). Topological invariants play essential role contributing to the boundary terms in the regularization scheme for the asymptotically AdS spacetimes, so that the differentiability of the action is automatically secured. Intriguingly, it turns out that the black hole thermodynamics does not depend on the Immirzi parameter for the AdS-Schwarzschild, AdS-Kerr, and topological black holes, whereas a nontrivial modification appears for the AdS-Taub-NUT spacetime, where it impacts not only the entropy, but also the total mass.

(to be published in Journal of Physics: Conference Series 343 (2012) 012032J)

ABSTRACT: In this paper we discuss some physical aspects of a theory obtained by gauging the AdS-Maxwell symmetry. Such theory has the form of Einstein gravity coupled to the SO(3,1) Yang-Mills field. We notice that there is another tetrad field, which can be associated with linear combination of Lorentz and Maxwell connections. Taking this tetrad as a fundamental variable makes it possible to cast the theory into the form of 'f-g' gravity, in first order formulation. Finally we discuss a simple cosmological model derived from the AdS-Maxwell gravity.

(to be published with J. Kowalski-Glikman)

ABSTRACT: In this paper we derive the Anti de Sitter counterpart of the super-Maxwell algebra presented recently by Bonanos et. al. Then we gauge this algebra and derive the corresponding supergravity theory, which turns out to be described by the standard N=1 supergravity lagrangian, up to topological terms.

(published in Mod. Phys. Lett. A 27, 1250023 (2012) with J. Kowalski-Glikman, M. Szczachor)

ABSTRACT: We deform the anti-de Sitter algebra by adding additional generators Z_{ab}, forming in this way the negative cosmological constant counterpart of the Maxwell algebra. We gauge this algebra and construct a dynamical model with the help of a constrained the BF theory. It turns out that the resulting theory is described by the Einstein-Cartan action with Holst term, and the gauge fields associated with the Maxwell generators $Z_{ab}$ appear only in topological terms that do not influence dynamical field equations. We briefly comment on the extension of this construction, which would lead to a nontrivial Maxwell fields dynamics.

(published in Mod. Phys. Lett. A, Vol. 26, No. 36 (2011) with J. Kowalski-Glikman, M. Szczachor)

ABSTRACT: We derive and analyze Noether charges associated with the diffeomorphism invariance for the constrained SO(2,3) BF theory. This result generalizes the Wald approach to the case of the first order gravity with a negative cosmological constant, the Holst modification and topological terms (Nieh-Yan, Euler, and Pontryagin). We show that differentiability of the action is automatically implemented by the the structure of the constrained BF model. Finally, we calculate the AdS-Schwarzschild black hole entropy from the Noether charge and we find that it does not depend on the Immirzi parameter.

(published in Phys.Rev.D83,124011 with J. Kowalski-Glikman)

ABSTRACT: In this paper we formulate N=1 supergravity as a constrained $BF$ theory with OSp(4|1) gauge superalgebra. We derive the modified supergravity Lagrangian that, apart from the standard supergravity with negative cosmological constant, contains terms proportional to the (inverse of) Immirzi parameter. Although these terms do not change classical field equations, they might be relevant in quantum theory. We briefly discuss the perturbation theory around the supersymmetric topological vacuum.

(published in Phys. Rev. D 81, 045022 with J. Kowalski-Glikman and M. Szczachor)

ABSTRACT: In this paper we discuss canonical analysis of SO(4,1) constrained BF theory. The action of this theory contains topological terms appended by a term that breaks the gauge symmetry down to the Lorentz subgroup SO(3,1). The equations of motion of this theory turn out to be the vacuum Einstein equations. By solving the B field equations one finds that the action of this theory contains not only the standard Einstein-Cartan term, but also the Holst term proportional to the inverse of the Immirzi parameter, as well as a combination of topological invariants. We show that the structure of the constraints of a SO(4,1) constrained BF theory is exactly that of gravity in Holst formulation. We also briefly discuss quantization of the theory.

(published in Class.Quant.Grav.27:185008,2010 with J. Kowalski-Glikman)

ABSTRACT: The theory of quantum gravity is hoped to solve, when constructed, many riddles of contemporary high energy physics and to bring about a completely new understanding of space, time and matter. This proceedings of the 'The Planck Scale' meeting presents a wide spectrum of aspects of quantum gravity, from formal mathematical investigations to cosmology and phenomenological models. It provides a reader an opportunity to learn about recent developments in various approaches to quantum gravity.

(conference held in Wroclaw, Poland 29 June - 3 July 2009) (see pdf with the frontpage)

Papers in progress

  • Note on Super-Chern-Simons for SO(2,3)
  • Taub-NUT: Black hole thermodynamics with Immirzi parameter
  • Black hole thermodynamics in the de Sitter space

Additional info about me:


  • Division of Fundamental Interactions Theory and Quantum Gravity (Institute of Theoretical Physics at Wroclaw University)


  • prof. J. Kowalski-Glikman

My interests and field of studies:

  • BF theories (deformation of topological theories, perturbation, BF as supergravity)
  • canonical analysis of the constrained systems
  • thermodynamical connections with gravity
  • quantum gravity

Hobby and activities:

Some of presentations, lectures, talks I've made along

Some popularization work: lecture at Festival of Science in Wroclaw 2011:
I can also recommend a fairy tale I wrote few years ago:
October 2011
August 2011
November 2010:
August 2010:
December 2009:
Very old presentations for scientific club and others:

Some useful things

During studies it's good to gain some abilities and gather some tools which can be really helpful in your daily (scientific) life:

I also recommend checking some links on the right.