We analyze the gauge structure of a recently proposed superconformal field theory in six dimensions. We find that this structure amounts to a weak Courant-Dorfman algebra, which, in turn, can be interpreted as a strong homotopy Lie algebra. This suggests that the superconformal field theory is closely related to higher gauge theory, describing the parallel transport of extended objects. Indeed we find that, under certain restrictions, the field content and gauge transformations reduce to those of higher gauge theory. We also present a number of interesting examples of admissible gauge structures such as the structure Lie 2-algebra of an abelian gerbe, differential crossed modules, the 3-algebras of M2-brane models, and string Lie 2-algebras. © 2013 AIP Publishing LLC.
- FIELD THEORY