Signatures of many-body localisation in a system without disorder and the relation to a glass transition

Hickey, James M., Genway, Sam and Garrahan, Juan P. (2016) Signatures of many-body localisation in a system without disorder and the relation to a glass transition. Journal of Statistical Mechanics: Theory and Experiment, 2016 (5). 054047. ISSN 1742-5468

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We study a quantum spin system—adapted from a facilitated spin model for classical glasses—with local bilinear interactions and without quenched disorder which seems to display characteristic signatures of a many-body localisation (MBL) transition. From direct diagonalisation of small systems, we find a change in certain dynamical and spectral properties at a critical value of a coupling, from those characteristic of a thermalising phase to those characteristic of a MBL phase. The system we consider is known to have a quantum phase transition in its ground-state in the limit of large size, related to a first-order active-to-inactive phase transition in the stochastic trajectories of an associated classical model of glasses. Our results here suggest that this first-order transition in the low-lying spectrum may influence the rest of the spectrum of the system in the large size limit. These findings may help understand the connection between MBL and structural glass transitions.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This is an author-created, un-copyedited version of an article published in Journal of Statistical Mechanics: Theory and Experiment. IOP Publishing Ltd is not responsible for any errors or omissions in this version of the manuscript or any version derived from it. The Version of Record is available online at
Keywords: Slow relaxation and glassy dynamics, Structural glasses (theory), Thermalization, Quantum quenches
Schools/Departments: University of Nottingham, UK > Faculty of Science > School of Physics and Astronomy
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Depositing User: Eprints, Support
Date Deposited: 06 Jan 2017 14:10
Last Modified: 04 May 2020 17:50

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