nLab
fusion category

Contents

Definition

Definition

A fusion category is a rigid semisimple linear (Vect-enriched) monoidal category, with only finitely many isomorphism classes of simple objects, such that the endomorphisms of the unit object form just the ground field kk.

Examples

The name “fusion category” comes from the central examples of structures whose canonical tensor product is called a “fusion product”, notably representations of loop groups and of Hopf algebras and of vertex operator algebras.

Properties

Relation to weak Hopf algebras

Under Tannaka duality, every fusion catgeory CC arises as the representation category of a weak Hopf algebra. (Ostrik)

Relation to pivotal and spherical categories

Fusion categories were first systematically studied by Etingof, Nikshych and Ostrik in On fusion categories. This paper listed many examples and proved many properties of fusion categories. One of the important conjectures made in that paper was the following:

Conjecture (Etingof, Nikshcych and Ostrik)

Every fusion category admits a pivotal structure.

Providing a certain condition is satisfied, a pivotal structure on a fusion category can be shown to correspond to a ‘twisted’ monoidal natural transformation of the identity functor on the category, where the twisting is given by the pivotal symbols.

Relation to extended 3d TQFT

Given the data of a fusion category one can build a 3d extended TQFT by various means. This is explained by the fact, see below, that fusion categories are (probably precisely) the fully dualizable objects in the 3-category MonCatMonCat of monoidal categories. This implies by the homotopy hypothesis that and how they induce 3d TQFTs.

Definition

Write MonCaTMonCaT for the (infinity,3)-category has as

Proposition

With its natural tensor product, MonCatMonCat is a symmetric monoidal (infinity,3)-category.

Proposition

A monoidal category which is fusion is fully dualizable in MonCatMonCat

This is due to (DouglasSchommer-PriesSnyder)

Suggestions

Here are three things such that it’d be awesome if they were sorted out on this page:

  1. Kuperberg’s theorem saying that abelian semisimple implies linear over some field. Finite, connected, semisimple, rigid tensor categories are linear

  2. Some correct version of the claim that abelian semisimple is the same as idempotent complete and nondegenerate. Math Overflow question

  3. Good notation distinguishing simple versus absolutely simple? (is End(V)=kEnd(V) = k or just VV has no nontrivial proper subobjects).

Together 1 and 2 let you go between the two different obvious notions of semisimple which seem a bit muddled here when I clicked through the links.

References

Some classical references include

A review is also in chapter 6 of

The Tannaka duality to weak Hopf algebras is discussed in

The relation to 3d TQFT is fully clarified in

For some discussion see

Revised on June 2, 2014 06:37:36 by Urs Schreiber (82.113.99.242)