Universal properties of many-body delocalization transitions

TitleUniversal properties of many-body delocalization transitions
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2015
AuthorsPotter A.C, Vasseur R., Parameswaran S.A.
JournalPhysical Review X
Start Page031033
Date Published09/2015
KeywordsCondensed Matter - Disordered Systems and Neural Networks, Condensed Matter - Mesoscale and Nanoscale Physics, Condensed Matter - Strongly Correlated Electrons

We study the dynamical melting of “hot” one-dimensional many-body localized systems. As disorder is weakened below a critical value, these nonthermal quantum glasses melt via a continuous dynamical phase transition into classical thermal liquids. By accounting for collective resonant tunneling processes, we derive and numerically solve an effective model for such quantum-to-classical transitions and compute their universal critical properties. Notably, the classical thermal liquid exhibits a broad regime of anomalously slow subdiffusive equilibration dynamics and energy transport. The subdiffusive regime is characterized by a continuously evolving dynamical critical exponent that diverges with a universal power at the transition. Our approach elucidates the universal long-distance, low-energy scaling structure of many-body delocalization transitions in one dimension, in a way that is transparently connected to the underlying microscopic physics. We discuss experimentally testable signatures of the predicted scaling properties.

UC Berkeley UC Irvine UC Los Angeles UC Santa Barbara UC San Diego