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*Special Seminar* Scaling and data collapse from valence bonds in random quantum magnets

Event Details

Event Dates: 

Monday, April 16, 2018 - 12:00pm

Seminar Location: 

  • Other

Seminar Location Other: 

Duane Physics Reading Room

Speaker Name(s): 

Itamar Kimchi

Speaker Affiliation(s): 

MIT
Seminar Type/Subject

Scientific Seminar Type: 

  • Condensed Matter Seminar

Event Details & Abstract: 

Several longstanding problems in quantum magnetism concern quenched disorder. I will theoretically analyze the role of random exchange energies in spin-1/2 magnets where magnetic frustration promotes the formation of entangled valence bonds. This includes a theory for 2d valence-bond solids subject to weak bond randomness as well as extensions to stronger disorder regimes. In both cases, we find that bond-randomness disorder nucleates topological defects that carry spin-1/2 moments, thereby renormalizing the lattice into a strongly random spin network with interesting low-energy excitations. Motivated by these results we conjecture Lieb-Schultz-Mattis-like restrictions for disordered magnets with spin-1/2 per statistical unit cell. I will then turn to experimental connections: most strikingly, heat capacity measurements on the various spin-1/2 magnets H3LiIr2O6, LiZn2Mo3O8, ZnCu3(OH)6Cl2 and 1T-TaS2 -- all described by magnetic frustration and quenched disorder but with no other common relation -- nevertheless show quasi-universal one-parameter data collapse of C[H,T] in a magnetic field. I will argue that this data collapse and its particular scaling function can be understood in terms of the theory as an emergent network of long range valence bonds at low energies. 

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