University of Minnesota
School of Physics & Astronomy

Physics and Astronomy Calendar

Thursday, December 15th 2016
2:00 pm:
Thesis Defense in PAN 110
Speaker: Brent Perreault, University of Minnesota
Subject: Identifying a Kitaev spin liquid
This is the public portion of Mr. Perreault's thesis defense. His advisor is Fiona Burnell.

The search for quantum spin liquid physics has been long and storied, but RuCl3 and the iridates A2IrO3 have opened up the possibility of realizing a new family of "Kitaev" quantum spin liquids. The Kitaev honeycomb model is a highly anisotropic quadratic spin model that has an exact QSL ground state. We study the Kitaev model on a variety of 3D lattices with the goal of identifying characteristic signatures of its QSL phase. We use the exact solution to demonstrate several features of the Kitaev QSL both quantitative and qualitative. These include broad Raman spectra characteristic of the fractionalized excitations and rich momentum-dependent RIXS spectra. We discuss how these measurements can probe novel features of these QSL's. For example, topological surface modes accessible to Brillouin scattering, and Landau level peaks in Raman spectra on carefully strained honeycomb fakes. In addition, the technical underpinnings of these calculations are reviewed in detail. Specifically, the theoretical predictions are completed with considerations of the e ects of perturbations, finite temperature studies, and careful analysis of the experimental excitations.

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