3 years ago

Quantum spin chains with multiple dynamics.

Xiao Chen, William Witczak-Krempa, Eduardo Fradkin

Many-body systems with multiple emergent time scales arise in various contexts, including classical critical systems, correlated quantum materials, and ultra-cold atoms. We investigate such non-trivial quantum dynamics in a new setting: a spin-1 bilinear-biquadratic chain. It has a solvable entangled groundstate, but a gapless excitation spectrum that is poorly understood. By using large-scale DMRG simulations, we find that the lowest excitations have a dynamical exponent $z$ that varies from 2 to 3.2 as we vary a coupling in the Hamiltonian. We find an additional gapless mode with a continuously varying exponent $2\leq z <2.7$, which establishes the presence of multiple dynamics. In order to explain these striking properties, we construct a continuum wavefunction for the groundstate, which correctly describes the correlations and entanglement properties. We also give a continuum parent Hamiltonian, but show that additional ingredients are needed to capture the excitations of the chain. By using an exact mapping to the non-equilibrium dynamics of a classical spin chain, we find that the large dynamical exponent is due to subdiffusive spin motion. Finally, we discuss the connections to other spin chains and to a family of quantum critical models in 2d.

Publisher URL: http://arxiv.org/abs/1706.02304

DOI: arXiv:1706.02304v2

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