Nonzero-temperature transport near quantum critical points

Damle, Kedar ; Sachdev, Subir (1997) Nonzero-temperature transport near quantum critical points Physical Review B: Condensed Matter and Materials Physics, 56 (14). Article ID 8714. ISSN 2469-9950

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We describe the nature of charge transport at nonzero temperatures (T) above the two-dimensional (d) superfluid-insulator quantum-critical point. We argue that the transport is characterized by inelastic collisions among thermally excited carriers at a rate of order kBT/ħ. This implies that the transport at frequencies ω≪kBT/ħ is in the hydrodynamic, collision-dominated (or incoherent) regime, while ω≫kBT/ħ is the collisionless (or phase-coherent) regime. The conductivity is argued to be e2/h times a nontrivial universal scaling function of ħω/kBT, and not independent of ħω/kBT, as has been previously claimed or implicitly assumed. The experimentally measured dc conductivity is the hydrodynamic ħω/kBT→0 limit of this function, and is a universal number times e2/h, even though the transport is incoherent. Previous work determined the conductivity by incorrectly assuming it was also equal to the collisionless ħω/kBT→∞ limit of the scaling function, which actually describes phase-coherent transport with a conductivity given by a different universal number times e2/h. We provide a computation of the universal dc conductivity in a disorder-free boson model, along with explicit crossover functions, using a quantum Boltzmann equation and an expansion in ε=3−d. The case of spin transport near quantum-critical points in antiferromagnets is also discussed. Similar ideas should apply to the transitions in quantum Hall systems and to metal-insulator transitions. We suggest experimental tests of our picture and speculate on a route to self-duality at two-dimensional quantum-critical points.

Item Type:Article
Source:Copyright of this article belongs to American Physical Society.
ID Code:103876
Deposited On:09 Mar 2018 11:30
Last Modified:09 Mar 2018 11:30

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