3 years ago

Entanglement negativity and sudden death in the toric code at finite temperature.

Claudio Castelnovo, Oliver Hart

We study the fate of quantum correlations at finite temperature in the two dimensional toric code using the logarithmic entanglement negativity. We are able to obtain exact results that give us insight into how thermal excitations affect quantum entanglement. The toric code has two types of elementary excitations (defects) costing different energies. We show that an $\mathcal{O}(1)$ density of the lower energy defect is required to degrade the zero-temperature entanglement between two subsystems in contact with one another. However, one type of excitation alone is not sufficient to kill all quantum correlations, and an $\mathcal{O}(1)$ density of the higher energy defect is required to cause the so-called sudden death of the negativity. Interestingly, if the energy cost of one of the excitations is taken to infinity, quantum correlations survive up to arbitrarily high temperatures, a feature that is likely shared with other quantum spin liquids and frustrated systems in general, when projected down to their low energy states. We demonstrate this behaviour both for small subsystems, where we can prove that the negativity is a necessary and sufficient condition for separability, as well as for extended subsystems, where it is only a sufficient condition. We further observe that the negativity per boundary degree of freedom at a given temperature increases (parametrically) with the size of the boundary, and that quantum correlations between subsystems with extended boundaries are more robust to thermal fluctuations.

Publisher URL: http://arxiv.org/abs/1710.11139

DOI: arXiv:1710.11139v1

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