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Interacting invariants for Floquet phases of fermions in two dimensions

Research paper by Lukasz Fidkowski, Hoi Chun Po, Andrew C. Potter, Ashvin Vishwanath

Indexed on: 21 Mar '17Published on: 21 Mar '17Published in: arXiv - Physics - Strongly Correlated Electrons



Abstract

We construct a many-body quantized invariant that sharply distinguishes among two dimensional non-equilibrium driven phases of interacting fermions. This is an interacting generalization of a band-structure Floquet quasi-energy winding number, and describes chiral pumping of quantum information along the edge. In particular, our invariant sharply distinguishes between a trivial and anomalous Floquet Anderson insulator in the interacting, many-body localized setting. It also applies more generally to models where only fermion parity is conserved, where it differentiates between trivial models and ones that pump Kitaev Majorana chains to the boundary, such as ones recently introduced in the context of emergent fermions arising from eigenstate $\Z_2$ topological order. We evaluate our invariant for the edge of such a system with eigenstate $\Z_2$ topological order, and show that it is necessarily nonzero when the Floquet unitary exchanges electric and magnetic excitations, proving a connection between bulk anyonic symmetry and edge chirality.