Classical many-body chaos with and without quasiparticles

Published on May 7, 2021in arXiv: Statistical Mechanics
· DOI :10.1103/PHYSREVB.103.174302
Thomas Bilitewski8
Estimated H-index: 8
,
Subhro Bhattacharjee17
Estimated H-index: 17
,
Roderich Moessner68
Estimated H-index: 68
Sources
Abstract
We study correlations, transport and chaos in a Heisenberg magnet as a classical model many-body system. By varying temperature and dimensionality, we can tune between settings with and without symmetry breaking and accompanying collective modes or quasiparticles. We analyse both conventional and out-of-time-ordered spin correlators (`decorrelators') to track the spreading of a spatiotemporally localised perturbation -- the wingbeat of the butterfly -- as well as transport coefficients and Lyapunov exponents. We identify a number of qualitatively different regimes. Trivially, at T=0 there is no dynamics at all. In the limit of low temperature, T=0^+ integrability emerges, with infinitely long-lived magnons; here the wavepacket created by the perturbation propagates ballistically, yielding a lightcone at the spin wave velocity which thus subsumes the butterfly velocity; inside the lightcone, a pattern characteristic of the free spin wave spectrum is visible at short times. On top of this, residual interactionslead to spin wave lifetimes which, while divergent in this limit, remain finite at any nonzero T At the longest times, this leads to a `standard' chaotic regime; for this regime, we show that the Lyapunov exponent is simply proportional to the inverse spin-wave lifetime. Visibly strikingly, between this and the `short-time' integrable regimes, a scarred regime emerges: here, the decorrelator is spatiotemporally highly non-uniform, being dominated by rare and random scattering events seeding secondary lightcones. As the spin correlation length decreases with increasing T the distinction between these regimes disappears and at high temperature the previously studied chaotic paramagnetic regime emerges. For this, we elucidate how, somewhat counterintuitively, the ballistic butterfly velocity arises from a diffusive spin dynamics.
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