Abstract:
We show that the reduced Hochschild homology of a DG open Frobenius algebra has the natural structure of a Batalin-Vilkovisky coalgebra, and the reduced cyclic homology has the natural structure of a gravity coalgebra. This gives an algebraic model for a Batalin-Vilkovisky coalgebra structure on the reduced homology of the free loop space of a simply connected closed oriented manifold, and a gravity coalgebra structure on the reduced equivariant homology.

Abstract:
The aim of this paper is to define a chain level refinement of the Batalin-Vilkovisky (BV) algebra structure on homology of the free loop space of a closed $C^\infty$-manifold. Namely, we propose a new chain model of the free loop space, and define an action of a certain chain model of the framed little disks operad on it, recovering the original BV structure on homology level. We also compare this structure to a solution of Deligne's conjecture for Hochschild cochain complexes of differential graded algebras. To define the chain model of the loop space, we introduce a notion of de Rham chains, which is a hybrid of singular chains and differential forms.

Abstract:
Batalin-Vilkovisky algebras are a new type of algebraic structure on graded vector spaces, which first arose in the work of Batalin and Vilkovisky on gauge fixing in quantum field theory. In this article, we show that there is a natural structure of a Batalin-Vilkovisky algebra on the cohomology of a topological field theory in two dimensions. Lian and Zuckerman have constructed this Batalin-Vilkovisky structure, in the setting of topological chiral field theories, and shown that the structure is non-trivial in two-dimensional string theory. Our approach is to use algebraic topology, whereas their proofs have a more algebraic character.

Abstract:
An invariant definition of the operator $\Delta $ of the Batalin-Vilkovisky formalism is proposed. It is defined as the divergence of a Hamiltonian vector field with an odd Poisson bracket (antibracket). Its main properties, which follow from this definition, as well as an example of realization on K\"ahlerian supermanifolds, are considered. The geometrical meaning of the Batalin-Vilkovisky formalism is discussed.

Abstract:
A Batalin-Vilkovisky formalism is most general framework to construct consistent quantum field theories. Its mathematical structure is called {\it a Batalin-Vilkovisky structure}. First we explain rather mathematical setting of a Batalin-Vilkovisky formalism. Next, we consider deformation theory of a Batalin-Vilkovisky structure. Especially, we consider deformation of topological sigma models in any dimension, which is closely related to deformation theories in mathematics, including deformation from commutative geometry to noncommutative geometry. We obtain a series of new nontrivial topological sigma models and we find these models have the Batalin-Vilkovisky structures based on a series of new algebroids.

Abstract:
We show that a graded commutative algebra A with any square zero odd differential operator is a natural generalization of a Batalin-Vilkovisky algebra. While such an operator of order 2 defines a Gerstenhaber (Lie) algebra structure on A, an operator of an order higher than 2 (Koszul-Akman definition) leads to the structure of a strongly homotopy Lie algebra (L$_\infty$-algebra) on A. This allows us to give a definition of a Batalin-Vilkovisky algebra up to homotopy. We also make a conjecture which is a generalization of the formality theorem of Kontsevich to the Batalin-Vilkovisky algebra level.

Abstract:
The Batalin-Vilkovisky master equations, both classical and quantum, are precisely the integrability equations for deformations of algebras and differential algebras respectively. This is not a coincidence; the Batalin-Vilkovisky approach is here translated into the language of deformation theory.

Abstract:
The present paper is devoted to the study of geometry of Batalin-Vilkovisky quantization procedure. The main mathematical objects under consideration are P-manifolds and SP-manifolds (supermanifolds provided with an odd symplectic structure and, in the case of SP-manifolds, with a volume element). The Batalin-Vilkovisky procedure leads to consideration of integrals of the superharmonic functions over Lagrangian submanifolds. The choice of Lagrangian submanifold can be interpreted as a choice of gauge condition; Batalin and Vilkovisky proved that in some sense their procedure is gauge independent. We prove much more general theorem of the same kind. This theorem leads to a conjecture that one can modify the quantization procedure in such a way as to avoid the use of the notion of Lagrangian submanifold. In the next paper we will show that this is really so at least in the semiclassical approximation. Namely the physical quantities can be expressed as integrals over some set of critical points of solution S to the master equation with the integrand expressed in terms of Reidemeister torsion. This leads to a simplification of quantization procedure and to the possibility to get rigorous results also in the infinite-dimensional case. The present paper contains also a compete classification of P-manifolds and SP-manifolds. The classification is interesting by itself, but in this paper it plays also a role of an important tool in the proof of other results.

Abstract:
This paper provides an explicit cofibrant resolution of the operad encoding Batalin-Vilkovisky algebras. Thus it defines the notion of homotopy Batalin-Vilkovisky algebras with the required homotopy properties. To define this resolution we extend the theory of Koszul duality to operads and properads that are defind by quadratic and linear relations. The operad encoding Batalin-Vilkovisky algebras is shown to be Koszul in this sense. This allows us to prove a Poincare-Birkhoff-Witt Theorem for such an operad and to give an explicit small quasi-free resolution for it. This particular resolution enables us to describe the deformation theory and homotopy theory of BV-algebras and of homotopy BV-algebras. We show that any topological conformal field theory carries a homotopy BV-algebra structure which lifts the BV-algebra structure on homology. The same result is proved for the singular chain complex of the double loop space of a topological space endowed with an action of the circle. We also prove the cyclic Deligne conjecture with this cofibrant resolution of the operad BV. We develop the general obstruction theory for algebras over the Koszul resolution of a properad and apply it to extend a conjecture of Lian-Zuckerman, showing that certain vertex algebras have an explicit homotopy BV-algebra structure.