skip to main content


Title: Relative anomalies in (2+1)D symmetry enriched topological states
Certain patterns of symmetry fractionalization in topologicallyordered phases of matter are anomalous, in the sense that they can onlyoccur at the surface of a higher dimensional symmetry-protectedtopological (SPT) state. An important question is to determine how tocompute this anomaly, which means determining which SPT hosts a givensymmetry-enriched topological order at its surface. While special casesare known, a general method to compute the anomaly has so far beenlacking. In this paper we propose a general method to compute relativeanomalies between different symmetry fractionalization classes of agiven (2+1)D topological order. This method applies to all types ofsymmetry actions, including anyon-permuting symmetries and generalspace-time reflection symmetries. We demonstrate compatibility of therelative anomaly formula with previous results for diagnosing anomaliesfor \mathbb{Z}_2^{T} ℤ 2 T space-time reflection symmetry (e.g. where time-reversal squares to theidentity) and mixed anomalies for U(1) \times \mathbb{Z}_2^{T} U ( 1 ) × ℤ 2 T and U(1) \rtimes \mathbb{Z}_2^{T} U ( 1 ) ⋊ ℤ 2 T symmetries. We also study a number of additional examples, includingcases where space-time reflection symmetries are intertwined innon-trivial ways with unitary symmetries, such as \mathbb{Z}_4^{T} ℤ 4 T and mixed anomalies for \mathbb{Z}_2 \times \mathbb{Z}_2^{T} ℤ 2 × ℤ 2 T symmetry, and unitary \mathbb{Z}_2 \times \mathbb{Z}_2 ℤ 2 × ℤ 2 symmetry with non-trivial anyon permutations.  more » « less
Award ID(s):
1846109 1753240
NSF-PAR ID:
10142858
Author(s) / Creator(s):
;
Date Published:
Journal Name:
SciPost Physics
Volume:
8
Issue:
2
ISSN:
2542-4653
Format(s):
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
More Like this
  1. (3+1)D topological phases of matter can host a broad class of non-trivial topological defects of codimension-1, 2, and 3, of which the well-known point charges and flux loops are special cases. The complete algebraic structure of these defects defines a higher category, and can be viewed as an emergent higher symmetry. This plays a crucial role both in the classification of phases of matter and the possible fault-tolerant logical operations in topological quantum error-correcting codes. In this paper, we study several examples of such higher codimension defects from distinct perspectives. We mainly study a class of invertible codimension-2 topological defects, which we refer to as twist strings. We provide a number of general constructions for twist strings, in terms of gauging lower dimensional invertible phases, layer constructions, and condensation defects. We study some special examples in the context of \mathbb{Z}_2 ℤ 2 gauge theory with fermionic charges, in \mathbb{Z}_2 \times \mathbb{Z}_2 ℤ 2 × ℤ 2 gauge theory with bosonic charges, and also in non-Abelian discrete gauge theories based on dihedral ( D_n D n ) and alternating ( A_6 A 6 ) groups. The intersection between twist strings and Abelian flux loops sources Abelian point charges, which defines an H^4 H 4 cohomology class that characterizes part of an underlying 3-group symmetry of the topological order. The equations involving background gauge fields for the 3-group symmetry have been explicitly written down for various cases. We also study examples of twist strings interacting with non-Abelian flux loops (defining part of a non-invertible higher symmetry), examples of non-invertible codimension-2 defects, and examples of the interplay of codimension-2 defects with codimension-1 defects. We also find an example of geometric, not fully topological, twist strings in (3+1)D A_6 A 6 gauge theory. 
    more » « less
  2. null (Ed.)
    Strong interactions between electrons occupying bands of opposite (orlike) topological quantum numbers (Chern =\pm1 = ± 1 ),and with flat dispersion, are studied by using lowest Landau level (LLL)wavefunctions. More precisely, we determine the ground states for twoscenarios at half-filling: (i) LLL’s with opposite sign of magneticfield, and therefore opposite Chern number; and (ii) LLL’s with the samemagnetic field. In the first scenario – which we argue to be a toy modelinspired by the chirally symmetric continuum model for twisted bilayergraphene – the opposite Chern LLL’s are Kramer pairs, and thus thereexists time-reversal symmetry ( \mathbb{Z}_2 ℤ 2 ).Turning on repulsive interactions drives the system to spontaneouslybreak time-reversal symmetry – a quantum anomalous Hall state describedby one particle per LLL orbital, either all positive Chern |{++\cdots+}\rangle | + + ⋯ + ⟩ or all negative |{--\cdots-}\rangle | − − ⋯ − ⟩ .If instead, interactions are taken between electrons of like-Chernnumber, the ground state is an SU(2) S U ( 2 ) ferromagnet, with total spin pointing along an arbitrary direction, aswith the \nu=1 ν = 1 spin- \frac{1}{2} 1 2 quantum Hall ferromagnet. The ground states and some of theirexcitations for both of these scenarios are argued analytically, andfurther complimented by density matrix renormalization group (DMRG) andexact diagonalization. 
    more » « less
  3. We study the gauging of a global U(1) symmetry in a gapped system in(2+1)d. The gauging procedure has been well-understood for a finiteglobal symmetry group, which leads to a new gapped phase with emergentgauge structure and can be described algebraically using themathematical framework of modular tensor category (MTC). We develop acategorical description of U(1) gauging in a MTC, taking into accountthe dynamics of U(1) gauge field absent in the finite group case. Whenthe ungauged system has a non-zero Hall conductance, the gauged theoryremains gapped and we determine the complete set of anyon data for thegauged theory. On the other hand, when the Hall conductance vanishes, weargue that gauging has the same effect of condensing a special Abeliananyon nucleated by inserting 2\pi 2 π U(1) flux. We apply our procedure to theSU(2) _k k MTCs and derive the full MTC data for the \mathbb{Z}_k ℤ k parafermion MTCs. We also discuss a dual U(1) symmetry that emergesafter the original U(1) symmetry of an MTC is gauged. 
    more » « less
  4. We propose and prove a family of generalized Lieb-Schultz-Mattis~(LSM) theorems for symmetry protected topological~(SPT) phases on boson/spin models in any dimensions.The ``conventional'' LSM theorem, applicable to e.g. any translation invariant system with an odd number of spin-1/2 particles per unit cell, forbids a symmetric short-range-entangled ground state in such a system.Here we focus on systems with no LSM anomaly, where global/crystalline symmetries and fractional spins within the unit cell ensure that any symmetric SRE ground state must be a non-trivial SPT phase with anomalous boundary excitations.Depending on models, they can be either strong or ``higher-order'' crystalline SPT phases, characterized by non-trivial surface/hinge/corner states.Furthermore, given the symmetry group and the spatial assignment of fractional spins, we are able to determine all possible SPT phases for a symmetric ground state, using the real space construction for SPT phases based on the spectral sequence of cohomology theory.We provide examples in one, two and three spatial dimensions, and discuss possible physical realization of these SPT phases based on condensation of topological excitations in fractionalized phases. 
    more » « less
  5. A bstract We analyze topological mass terms of BF type arising in supersymmetric M-theory compactifications to AdS 5 . These describe spontaneously broken higher-form gauge symmetries in the bulk. Different choices of boundary conditions for the BF terms yield dual field theories with distinct global discrete symmetries. We discuss in detail these symmetries and their ’t Hooft anomalies for 4d $$ \mathcal{N} $$ N = 1 SCFTs arising from M5-branes wrapped on a Riemann surface without punctures, including theories from M5-branes at a ℤ 2 orbifold singularity. The anomaly polynomial is computed via inflow and contains background fields for discrete global 0-, 1-, and 2-form symmetries and continuous 0-form symmetries, as well as axionic background fields. The latter are properly interpreted in the context of anomalies in the space of coupling constants. 
    more » « less