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Critical Points and Phase Transitions in 5D Compactifications of M-Theory


We study critical points of the BPS mass $Z$, the BPS string tension $Z_m$, the black hole potential $V$ and the gauged central charge potential $P$ for M-theory compactified on Calabi-Yau three-folds. We first show that the stabilization equations for $Z$ (determining the black hole entropy) take an extremely simple form in five dimensions as opposed to four dimensions. The stabilization equations for $Z_m$ are also very simple and determine the size of the infinite $adS_3$-throat of the string. The black hole potential in general exhibits two classes of critical points: supersymmetric critical points which coincide with those of the central charge and non-supersymmetric critical points. We then generalize the discussion to the entire extended K\"ahler cone encompassing topologically different but birationally equivalent Calabi-Yau three-folds that are connected via flop transitions. We examine behavior of the four potentials to probe the nature of these phase transitions. We find that $V$ and $P$ are continuous but not smooth across the flop transition, while $Z$ and its first two derivatives, as well as $Z_m$ and its first derivative, are continuous. This in turn implies that supersymmetric stabilization of $Z$ and $Z_m$ for a given configuration takes place in at most one point throughout the entire extended K\"ahler cone. The corresponding black holes (or string states) interpolate between different Calabi-Yau three-folds. At the boundaries of the extended K\"ahler cone we observe that electric states become massless and/or magnetic strings become tensionless.

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