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Title: Fractionalization, entanglement, and separation: Understanding the collective excitations in a spin-orbital chain

Abstract

Using a combined analytical and numerical approach, we study the collective spin and orbital excitations in a spin-orbital chain under a crystal field. Irrespective of the crystal field strength, these excitations can be universally described by fractionalized resonating-valence-bond fermions. Each of the fractional quasiparticles carries both spin and orbital quantum numbers, and thereby the spin and orbital variables are always entangled in the collective excitations. The result shows that the recently reported spin-orbital separation occurs solely due to a particular choice of basis, which is valid only when crystal fields fully polarize the orbital degrees of freedom. The persistent fractionalization contrasts strikingly with the case of a spin chain, where fractionalized spinons cannot be individually observed but confined to form magnons of integral quantum numbers in a strong magnetic field.

Authors:
; ; ;
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Basic Energy Sciences (BES) (SC-22)
OSTI Identifier:
1392483
DOE Contract Number:  
AC02-06CH11357
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Journal Name:
Physical Review. B, Condensed Matter and Materials Physics
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 91; Journal Issue: 16; Journal ID: ISSN 1098-0121
Publisher:
American Physical Society (APS)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English

Citation Formats

Chen, Cheng-Chien, van Veenendaal, Michel, Devereaux, Thomas P., and Wohlfeld, Krzysztof. Fractionalization, entanglement, and separation: Understanding the collective excitations in a spin-orbital chain. United States: N. p., 2015. Web. doi:10.1103/PhysRevB.91.165102.
Chen, Cheng-Chien, van Veenendaal, Michel, Devereaux, Thomas P., & Wohlfeld, Krzysztof. Fractionalization, entanglement, and separation: Understanding the collective excitations in a spin-orbital chain. United States. doi:10.1103/PhysRevB.91.165102.
Chen, Cheng-Chien, van Veenendaal, Michel, Devereaux, Thomas P., and Wohlfeld, Krzysztof. Wed . "Fractionalization, entanglement, and separation: Understanding the collective excitations in a spin-orbital chain". United States. doi:10.1103/PhysRevB.91.165102.
@article{osti_1392483,
title = {Fractionalization, entanglement, and separation: Understanding the collective excitations in a spin-orbital chain},
author = {Chen, Cheng-Chien and van Veenendaal, Michel and Devereaux, Thomas P. and Wohlfeld, Krzysztof},
abstractNote = {Using a combined analytical and numerical approach, we study the collective spin and orbital excitations in a spin-orbital chain under a crystal field. Irrespective of the crystal field strength, these excitations can be universally described by fractionalized resonating-valence-bond fermions. Each of the fractional quasiparticles carries both spin and orbital quantum numbers, and thereby the spin and orbital variables are always entangled in the collective excitations. The result shows that the recently reported spin-orbital separation occurs solely due to a particular choice of basis, which is valid only when crystal fields fully polarize the orbital degrees of freedom. The persistent fractionalization contrasts strikingly with the case of a spin chain, where fractionalized spinons cannot be individually observed but confined to form magnons of integral quantum numbers in a strong magnetic field.},
doi = {10.1103/PhysRevB.91.165102},
journal = {Physical Review. B, Condensed Matter and Materials Physics},
issn = {1098-0121},
number = 16,
volume = 91,
place = {United States},
year = {2015},
month = {4}
}

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