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      Edge mode locality in perturbed symmetry protected topological order

      1 , 1 , 1 , 1 , 1
      SciPost Physics
      Stichting SciPost

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          Abstract

          Spin chains with a symmetry-protected edge zero modes can be seen as prototypical systems for exploring topological signatures in quantum systems. However in an experimental realization of such a system, spurious interactions may cause the edge zero modes to delocalize. To combat this influence beyond simply increasing the bulk gap, it has been proposed to harness disorder which does not drive the system out of a topological phase. Equipped with numerical tools for constructing locally conserved operators that we introduce, we comprehensively explore the interplay of local interactions and disorder on localized edge modes in such systems. Contrary to established heuristic reasoning, we find that disorder has no effect on the edge mode localization length in the non-interacting regime. Moreover, disorder helps localize only a subset of edge modes in the truly interacting regime. We identify one edge mode operator that behaves as if subjected to a non-interacting perturbation, i.e., shows no disorder dependence. This implies that in finite systems, edge mode operators effectively delocalize at distinct interaction strengths despite the presence of disorder. In essence, our findings suggest that the ability to identify and control the best localized edge mode trumps any gains from introducing disorder.

          Most cited references36

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          Unpaired Majorana fermions in quantum wires

          A. Kitaev (2001)
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            Majorana zero modes in superconductor–semiconductor heterostructures

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              Symmetry protected topological orders and the group cohomology of their symmetry group

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                Author and article information

                Journal
                SciPost Physics
                SciPost Phys.
                Stichting SciPost
                2542-4653
                2019
                June 21 2019
                : 6
                : 6
                Affiliations
                [1 ]Freie Universität Berlin
                Article
                10.21468/SciPostPhys.6.6.072
                c752952d-26a7-4fd6-8ac3-2fdcb3e06f9f
                © 2019

                This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 Unported License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

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                Physics
                Physics

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