to the ADHM equations. This constant had been argued, following , to arise in thedescription of instantons on
-branes upon turning on a constant
so puttingthe two facts together it was proposed that instantons on branes with a
-ﬁeld should bedescribed by noncommutative Yang-Mills theory [35,38].
Another very cogent argument for this is as follows. Consider
parallel threebranes of Type IIB. They can support supersymmetric conﬁgurations in the form of
) instantons.If the instantons are large, they can be described by the classical self-dual Yang-Millsequations. If the instantons are small, the classical description of the instantons is nolonger good. However, it can be shown that, at
= 0, the instanton moduli space
instring theory coincides precisely with the classical instanton moduli space. The argumentfor this is presented in section 2.3. In particular,
has the small instanton singularitiesthat are familiar from classical Yang-Mills theory. The signiﬁcance of these singularitiesin string theory is well known: they arise because an instanton can shrink to a point andescape as a
1-brane [39,40]. Now if one turns on a
-ﬁeld, the argument that the stringyinstanton moduli space coincides with the classical instanton moduli space fails, as we willalso see in section 2.3. Indeed, the instanton moduli space must be corrected for nonzero
.The reason is that, at nonzero
is anti-self-dual) a conﬁguration of a threebraneand a separated
1-brane is not BPS,
so an instanton on the threebrane cannot shrinkto a point and escape. The instanton moduli space must therefore be modiﬁed, for non-zero
, to eliminate the small instanton singularity. Adding a constant to the ADHMequations resolves the small instanton singularity , and since going to noncommutative
does add this constant , this strongly encourages us to believe that instantons withthe
-ﬁeld should be described as instantons on a noncommutative space.This line of thought leads to an apparent paradox, however. Instantons come inall sizes, and however else they can be described, big instantons can surely be describedby conventional Yang-Mills theory, with the familiar stringy
corrections that are of higher dimension, but possess the standard Yang-Mills gauge invariance. The proposal in implies, however, that the large instantons would be described by classical Yang-Millsequations with corrections coming from the noncommutativity of spacetime. For these two
One must recall that in the presence of a
-brane, a constant
-ﬁeld cannot be gauged awayand can in fact be reinterpreted as a magnetic ﬁeld on the brane.
This is shown in a footnote in section 4.2; the conﬁgurations in question are further studiedin section 5.