Purpose of FeynCalc, August 2000

During Rolf’s visit in Zurich in the summer 2000, we discussed what the overall intentions are with writing a general software package for quantum field theory. Here’s what we came up with:

FeynCalc Manifesto

Rolf Mertig and Frederik Orellana
August 2000

The purpose of FeynCalc is to push the overall progress in calculational quantum field theory. FeynCalc already provides a powerful set of calculational tools and is now being developed in an open source framework in order to speed up development and bug-fixing.

The first version of FeynCalc (see Comp. Phys. Comm. 60 (1991) 165) arose out of the need to calculate one-loop scattering processes in the electro-weak Standard Model of particle physics: Such calculations involve tedious and repetitious evaluation of many Feynman diagrams which are easily hampered by trivial mistakes. FeynCalc addresses this issue by providing tools for standard operations in Feynman diagram calculations. The aim is clear: To shorten the way from the conception of a theoretical model to actual calculations by not having to reinvent the wheel for each model.

It is also clear that a standardized Mathematica notation for the objects in quantum field theory and the different models is very important. Many people use Mathematica for quantum field theory calculations, but all use different symbols, conventions for functions, etc. FeynCalc aims to provide a coherent general framework, the adaption of which, enables different groups of researchers to easily exchange and collaborate on calculations.

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