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Quantum Disentangled Liquids

Grover, Tarun and Fisher, Matthew P. A. (2014) Quantum Disentangled Liquids. Journal of Statistical Mechanics: Theory and Experiment, 2014 (10). Art. No. P10010. ISSN 1742-5468. doi:10.1088/1742-5468/2014/10/P10010.

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We propose and explore a new finite temperature phase of translationally invariant multi-component liquids which we call a 'Quantum Disentangled Liquid' (QDL) phase. We contemplate the possibility that in fluids consisting of two (or more) species of indistinguishable quantum particles with a large mass ratio, the light particles might 'localize' on the heavy particles. We give a precise, formal definition of this QDL phase in terms of the finite energy density many-particle wavefunctions. While the heavy particles are fully thermalized, for a typical fixed configuration of the heavy particles, the entanglement entropy of the light particles satisfies an area law; this implies that the light particles have not thermalized. Equivalently, but more intuitively, if the positions of all the heavy particles are measured, the projected wavefunction for the unmeasured light particles has as an area law entanglement entropy. Thus, in a QDL phase, thermal equilibration is incomplete, and the canonical assumptions of statistical mechanics are not fully operative. The definition of the QDL phase for heavy/light particles can be readily generalized to other cases with two (or more) conserved currents, such as spin/charge in a system of spin-1/2 fermions (as in a Hubbard model). Indeed, we argue that the finite energy-density eigenstates of the t–J model will generically be in such a spin/charge QDL, although the fate of the QDL in the large U Hubbard model is uncertain. We explore the possibility of QDL in water, with the light proton degrees of freedom becoming 'localized' on the oxygen ions. While we do not presently know whether a local, generic Hamiltonian can have eigenstates of the QDL form, if not, then the non-thermal behavior discussed here will exist as an interesting crossover phenomena at a time scale that diverges as the ratio of the mass of the heavy to the light particles also diverges.

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Additional Information:© 2014 IOP Publishing Ltd and SISSA Medialab srl. Published 9 October 2014. We thank Boris Shraiman, Daniel Fisher, Frank Pollmann, Jim Garrison, Leon Balents, Matt Hastings, Max Metlitski, Michael Fisher, Moshe Goldstein, Olexei Motrunich, Ryan Mishmash, Steve Shenker, T. Senthil, Yvette Fisher for helpful discussions and especially David Huse for helpful discussions and critical reading of our manuscript. This research was supported in part by the National Science Foundation under Grants DMR-1101912 (M.P.A.F.) and NSF PHY11-25915 (T.G.), and by the Caltech Institute of Quantum Information and Matter, an NSF Physics Frontiers Center with support of the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation (M.P.A.F.)
Group:Institute for Quantum Information and Matter
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Institute for Quantum Information and Matter (IQIM)UNSPECIFIED
Gordon and Betty Moore FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Issue or Number:10
Classification Code:PACS numbers: 05.30.-d, 03.65.Ud, 67.10.Fj
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20140714-160952577
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Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:47195
Deposited By: Jacquelyn O'Sullivan
Deposited On:15 Jul 2014 00:04
Last Modified:10 Nov 2021 17:36

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