Twisted sheaves and SU(r)/Z_r Vafa-Witten theory

Yunfeng Jiang, Martijn Kool

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


The SU (r) Vafa–Witten partition function, which virtually counts Higgs pairs on a projective surface S, was mathematically defined by Tanaka–Thomas. On the Langlands dual side, the first-named author recently introduced virtual counts of Higgs pairs on μ r-gerbes. In this paper, we instead use Yoshioka’s moduli spaces of twisted sheaves. Using Chern character twisted by rational B-field, we give a new mathematical definition of the SU (r) / Z r Vafa-Witten partition function when r is prime. Our definition uses the period-index theorem of de Jong. S-duality, a concept from physics, predicts that the SU (r) and SU (r) / Z r partition functions are related by a modular transformation. We turn this into a mathematical conjecture, which we prove for all K3 surfaces and prime numbers r.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)719-743
Number of pages25
JournalMathematische Annalen
Issue number1-2
Early online date9 Nov 2021
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2022


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