Exotic quantum criticality in interacting, spin-orbit coupled bosons


Will Cole (CMTC and JQI)
February 2, 2018
PSC 2136

*Drinks and snacks at 4:00 pm, talk at 4:10 pm*

Spin-orbit coupled Bose liquids provide an experimentally viable realization of quantum criticality in itinerant magnets. I will describe our recent theoretical work on this system, where we derive an effective field theory near the transition, which is essentially an acoustic phonon with a “gauge” coupling to an Ising field. The order parameter for the transition describes a broken Z2 spin symmetry, but the associated phase is qualitatively distinct from the Ising phase as it is accompanied by a nonzero momentum density which is generated by the gauge fluctuations at the transition. Having identified the appropriate effective field theory, we validate theory predictions with extensive numerical simulations (DMRG) of the microscopic Hamiltonian and extract the universal critical exponents.