# The square lattice Ising model on the rectangle I: Finite systems.

The partition function of the square lattice Ising model on the rectangle with open boundary conditions in both directions is calculated exactly for arbitrary system size $L\times M$ and temperature. We start with the dimer method of Kasteleyn, McCoy & Wu, construct a highly symmetric block transfer matrix and derive a factorization of the involved determinant, effectively decomposing the free energy of the system into two parts, $F(L,M)=F_\mathrm{strip}(L,M)+F_\mathrm{strip}^\mathrm{res}(L,M)$, where the residual part $F_\mathrm{strip}^\mathrm{res}(L,M)$ contains the nontrivial finite-$L$ contributions for fixed $M$. It is given by the determinant of a $\frac{M}{2}\times \frac{M}{2}$ matrix and can be mapped onto an effective spin model with $M$ Ising spins and long-range interactions. While $F_\mathrm{strip}^\mathrm{res}(L,M)$ becomes exponentially small for large $L/M$ or off-critical temperatures, it leads to important finite-size effects such as the critical Casimir force near criticality. The relations to the Casimir potential and the Casimir force are discussed.

Publisher URL: http://arxiv.org/abs/1609.01963

DOI: arXiv:1609.01963v5

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