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Localization in spin chains with facilitation constraints and disordered interactions

Ostmann, Maike; Marcuzzi, Matteo; Garrahan, Juan P; Lesanovsky, Igor


Maike Ostmann


Quantum many-body systems with kinetic constraints exhibit intriguing relaxation dynamics. Recent experimental progress in the field of cold atomic gases offers a handle for probing collective behavior of such systems, in particular for understanding the interplay between constraints and disorder. Here we explore a spin chain with facilitation constraints-a feature which is often used to model classical glass formers-together with disorder that originates from spin-spin interactions. The specific model we study, which is realized in a natural fashion in Rydberg quantum simulators, maps onto an XX-chain with non-local disorder. Our study shows that the combination of constraints and seemingly unconventional disorder may lead to interesting non-equilibrium behaviour in experimentally relevant setups. Introduction-Localization phenomena in many-body quantum systems are currently under extensive investigation. Initially, localization was discussed by Anderson [1] for non-interacting quantum particles in disordered potential landscapes. Since then the focus has increasingly shifted to the many-body domain, partially fueled by the development of refined techniques to experimentally engineer and probe many-body systems with cold atoms [2]. By now, evidence has been found that in isolated , one-dimensional, interacting systems the presence of disorder induces a phase transition from a thermal to a many-body localized one where ergodicity breaks down [3-20]; for reviews see [21-23]. Experiments [20, 24-26] have confirmed theoretical predictions, and signatures of MBL have also been identified in two-dimensional systems [27]. Aspects of MBL are also present in systems with weak periodic driving [28], in systems with disordered interactions [29, 30] as well as in systems coupled to an environment [31-36]. A second mechanism for interesting quantum relaxation is via constraints in the dynamics. In analogy with what occurs in models of classical glasses [37], quantum systems with kinetic constraints can display very slow and complex relaxation [38-40] and can be used to probe the emergence of MBL-like physics in the absence of disorder [41-51]. Hamiltonians with kinetic constraints can display particular many-body eigenstates that generalize the concept of quantum scars to interacting systems [52-55]. Constraints can further impose restrictions on the quantum dynamics either by removing states from the Hilbert space and/or by cutting off transition pathways between states. Supplemented by the presence of disorder , it is expected that constrained systems become very prone to localisation [56]. Here we are interested in understanding localization in disordered spin chains in the presence of facilitation kinetic constraints. Such a scenario was recently realized experimentally [57] within an optical lattice quantum simulator consisting of individually trapped Rydberg atoms [58-61]. Here atoms are excited in a way that


Ostmann, M., Marcuzzi, M., Garrahan, J. P., & Lesanovsky, I. (2019). Localization in spin chains with facilitation constraints and disordered interactions. Physical Review A, 99(6), 1-7.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date May 14, 2019
Online Publication Date Jun 6, 2019
Publication Date Jun 6, 2019
Deposit Date Jun 18, 2019
Publicly Available Date Jun 19, 2019
Journal Physical Review A
Print ISSN 2469-9926
Electronic ISSN 2469-9934
Publisher American Physical Society
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 99
Issue 6
Article Number 060101(R)
Pages 1-7
Public URL
Publisher URL


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