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Computing Entanglement in Quantum Matter

Roger Melko, University of Waterloo

13.07.2011 at 10:00 

Condensed matter physicists have recently begun exploiting the properties of entanglement as a resource for studying quantum materials. At the forefront of current efforts is the question of how the entanglement of two subregions in a quantum many-body groundstate scales with the subregion size. The general belief is that typical groundstates obey the so-called "area law", with entanglement entropy scaling as the boundary between regions. This has lead theorists to propose that sub-leading corrections to the area law can provide new indications of universal physics at exotic quantum phases and phase transitions. However, away from one dimension, entanglement entropy is difficult or impossible to calculate exactly, leaving the community in the dark about scaling in all but the simplest systems. In this talk, I will discuss recent breakthroughs in calculating entanglement entropy in two dimensions and higher using advanced numerical simulation techniques. This paves the way for future work in calculating new universal quantities derived from entanglement, which can be used as a diagnostic for detecting exotic physics in a variety of condensed matter systems.

 

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