4 years ago

Discrete time crystals in the absence of manifest symmetries or disorder in open quantum systems.

F. M. Gambetta, F. Carollo, M. Marcuzzi, J. P. Garrahan, I. Lesanovsky

We establish a link between metastability and a discrete time-crystalline phase in a periodically driven open quantum system. The mechanism we highlight requires neither the system to display any microscopic symmetry nor the presence of disorder, but relies instead on the emergence of a metastable regime. We investigate this in detail in an open quantum spin system, which is a canonical model for the exploration of collective phenomena in strongly interacting dissipative Rydberg gases. Here, a semi-classical approach reveals the emergence of a robust discrete time-crystalline phase in the thermodynamic limit in which metastability, dissipation, and inter-particle interactions play a crucial role. We perform large-scale numerical simulations in order to investigate the dependence on the range of interactions, from all-to-all to short ranged, and the scaling with system size of the lifetime of the time crystal.

Publisher URL: http://arxiv.org/abs/1807.10161

DOI: arXiv:1807.10161v3

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