Approximating observables on eigenstates of large many-body localized systems

PHYSICAL REVIEW B 99 (2019) ARTN 104201

AK Kulshreshtha, A Pal, TB Wahl, SH Simon

Eigenstate Correlations, Thermalization and the Butterfly Effect

Physical Review Letters American Physical Society (2019)


Free fermions in disguise


P Fendley

Onsager symmetries in U(1)-invariant clock models


E Vernier, E O'Brien, P Fendley

Signatures of the many-body localized regime in two dimensions

NATURE PHYSICS 15 (2019) 164-169

TB Wahl, A Pal, SH Simon

Topological 'Luttinger' invariants for filling-enforced non-symmorphic semimetals.

Journal of physics. Condensed matter : an Institute of Physics journal 31 (2019) 104001-

SA Parameswaran

Luttinger's theorem is a fundamental result in the theory of interacting Fermi systems: it states that the volume inside the Fermi surface is left invariant by interactions, if the number of particles is held fixed. Although this is traditionally justified in terms of analytic properties of Green's functions, it can be viewed as arising from a momentum balance argument that examines the response of the ground state to the insertion of a single flux quantum (Oshikawa 2000 Phys. Rev. Lett. 84 3370). This reveals that the Fermi volume is a topologically protected quantity, whose change requires a phase transition. However, this sheds no light on the stability or lack thereof of interacting semimetals, that either lack a Fermi surface, or have perfectly compensated electron and hole pockets and hence vanishing net Fermi volume. Here, I show that semimetallic phases in non-symmorphic crystals possess additional topological 'Luttinger invariants' that can be nonzero even though the Fermi volume vanishes. The existence of these invariants is linked to the inability of non-symmorphic crystals to host band insulating ground states except at special fillings. I exemplify the use of these new invariants by showing that they distinguish various classes of two- and three-dimensional semimetals.

Enhanced bacterial swimming speeds in macromolecular polymer solutions

Nature Physics (2019)

A Zöttl, JM Yeomans

© 2019, The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer Nature Limited. The locomotion of swimming bacteria in simple Newtonian fluids can successfully be described within the framework of low-Reynolds-number hydrodynamics 1 . The presence of polymers in biofluids generally increases the viscosity, which is expected to lead to slower swimming for a constant bacterial motor torque. Surprisingly, however, experiments have shown that bacterial speeds can increase in polymeric fluids 2–5 . Whereas, for example, artificial helical microswimmers in shear-thinning fluids 6 or swimming Caenorhabditis elegans worms in wet granular media 7,8 increase their speeds substantially, swimming Escherichia coli bacteria in polymeric fluids show just a small increase in speed at low polymer concentrations, followed by a decrease at higher concentrations 2,4 . The mechanisms behind this behaviour are currently unclear, and therefore we perform extensive coarse-grained simulations of a bacterium swimming in explicitly modelled solutions of macromolecular polymers of different lengths and densities. We observe an increase of up to 60% in swimming speed with polymer density and demonstrate that this is due to a non-uniform distribution of polymers in the vicinity of the bacterium, leading to an apparent slip. However, this in itself cannot predict the large increase in swimming velocity: coupling to the chirality of the bacterial flagellum is also necessary.

Active transport in a channel: stabilisation by flow or thermodynamics.

Soft matter (2019)

S Chandragiri, A Doostmohammadi, JM Yeomans, SP Thampi

Recent experiments on active materials, such as dense bacterial suspensions and microtubule-kinesin motor mixtures, show a promising potential for achieving self-sustained flows. However, to develop active microfluidics it is necessary to understand the behaviour of active systems confined to channels. Therefore here we use continuum simulations to investigate the behaviour of active fluids in a two-dimensional channel. Motivated by the fact that most experimental systems show no ordering in the absence of activity, we concentrate on temperatures where there is no nematic order in the passive system, so that any nematic order is induced by the active flow. We systematically analyze the results, identify several different stable flow states, provide a phase diagram and show that the key parameters controlling the flow are the ratio of channel width to the length scale of active flow vortices, and whether the system is flow aligning or flow tumbling.

Emergence of Active Nematic Behavior in Monolayers of Isotropic Cells.

Physical review letters 122 (2019) 048004-048004

R Mueller, JM Yeomans, A Doostmohammadi

There is now growing evidence of the emergence and biological functionality of liquid crystal features, including nematic order and topological defects, in cellular tissues. However, how such features that intrinsically rely on particle elongation emerge in monolayers of cells with isotropic shapes is an outstanding question. In this Letter, we present a minimal model of cellular monolayers based on cell deformation and force transmission at the cell-cell interface that explains the formation of topological defects and captures the flow-field and stress patterns around them. By including mechanical properties at the individual cell level, we further show that the instability that drives the formation of topological defects, and leads to active turbulence, emerges from a feedback between shape deformation and active driving. The model allows us to suggest new explanations for experimental observations in tissue mechanics, and to propose designs for future experiments.

Coherent motion of dense active matter


A Doostmohammadi, JM Yeomans

Dynamics of individual Brownian rods in a microchannel flow.

Soft matter 15 (2019) 5810-5814

A Zöttl, KE Klop, AK Balin, Y Gao, JM Yeomans, DGAL Aarts

We study the orientational dynamics of heavy silica microrods flowing through a microfluidic channel. Comparing experiments and Brownian dynamics simulations we identify different particle orbits, in particular in-plane tumbling behavior, which cannot be explained by classical Jeffery theory, and we relate this behavior to the rotational diffusion of the rods. By constructing the full, three-dimensional, orientation distribution, we describe the rod trajectories and quantify the persistence of Jeffery orbits using temporal correlation functions of the Jeffery constant. We find that our colloidal rods lose memory of their initial configuration in about a second, corresponding to half a Jeffery period.

Bose-Einstein-like condensation in scalar active matter with diffusivity edge

Physical Review E 100 (2019)

R Golestanian

© 2019 American Physical Society. Due to their remarkable properties, systems that exhibit self-organization of their components resulting from intrinsic microscopic activity have been extensively studied in the last two decades. In a generic class of active matter, the interactions between the active components are represented via an effective density-dependent diffusivity in a mean-field single-particle description. Here, a class of scalar active matter is proposed by incorporating a diffusivity edge into the dynamics: when the local density of the system surpasses a critical threshold, the diffusivity vanishes. The effect of the diffusivity edge is studied under the influence of an external potential, which introduces the ability to control the behavior of the system by changing an effective temperature, which is defined in terms of the single-particle diffusivity and mobility. At a critical effective temperature, a system that is trapped by a harmonic potential is found to undergo a condensation transition, which manifests formal similarities to Bose-Einstein condensation.

Interacting multi-channel topological boundary modes in a quantum Hall valley system.

Nature 566 (2019) 363-367

MT Randeria, K Agarwal, BE Feldman, H Ding, H Ji, RJ Cava, SL Sondhi, SA Parameswaran, A Yazdani

Symmetry and topology are central to understanding quantum Hall ferromagnets (QHFMs), two-dimensional electronic phases with spontaneously broken spin or pseudospin symmetry whose wavefunctions also have topological properties1,2. Domain walls between distinct broken-symmetry QHFM phases are predicted to host gapless one-dimensional modes-that is, quantum channels that emerge because of a topological change in the underlying electronic wavefunctions at such interfaces. Although various QHFMs have been identified in different materials3-8, interacting electronic modes at these domain walls have not been probed. Here we use a scanning tunnelling microscope to directly visualize the spontaneous formation of boundary modes at domain walls between QHFM phases with different valley polarization (that is, the occupation of equal-energy but quantum mechanically distinct valleys in the electronic structure) on the surface of bismuth. Spectroscopy shows that these modes occur within a topological energy gap, which closes and reopens as the valley polarization switches across the domain wall. By changing the valley flavour and the number of modes at the domain wall, we can realize different regimes in which the valley-polarized channels are either metallic or develop a spectroscopic gap. This behaviour is a consequence of Coulomb interactions constrained by the valley flavour, which determines whether electrons in the topological modes can backscatter, making these channels a unique class of interacting one-dimensional quantum wires. QHFM domain walls can be realized in different classes of two-dimensional materials, providing the opportunity to explore a rich phase space of interactions in these quantum wires.

Magnetically-actuated artificial cilium: a simple theoretical model.

Soft matter (2019)

F Meng, D Matsunaga, JM Yeomans, R Golestanian

We propose a theoretical model for a magnetically-actuated artificial cilium in a fluid environment and investigate its dynamical behaviour, using both analytical calculations and numerical simulations. The cilium consists of a spherical soft magnet, a spherical hard magnet, and an elastic spring that connects the two magnetic components. Under a rotating magnetic field, the cilium exhibits a transition from phase-locking at low frequencies to phase-slipping at higher frequencies. We study the dynamics of the magnetic cilium in the vicinity of a wall by incorporating its hydrodynamic influence, and examine the efficiency of the actuated cilium in pumping viscous fluids. This cilium model can be helpful in a variety of applications such as transport and mixing of viscous solutions at small scales and fabricating microswimmers.

Magnetic Excitations of the Classical Spin Liquid MgCr2O4


X Bai, JAM Paddison, E Kapit, SM Koohpayeh, J-J Wen, SE Dutton, AT Savici, AI Kolesnikov, GE Granroth, CL Broholm, JT Chalker, M Mourigal

QUANTUM HALL EFFECT Fractional oscillations

NATURE PHYSICS 15 (2019) 527-528

SH Simon

Topological states in chiral active matter: Dynamic blue phases and active half-skyrmions.

The Journal of chemical physics 150 (2019) 064909-064909

L Metselaar, A Doostmohammadi, JM Yeomans

We numerically study the dynamics of two-dimensional blue phases in active chiral liquid crystals. We show that introducing contractile activity results in stabilised blue phases, while small extensile activity generates ordered but dynamic blue phases characterised by coherently moving half-skyrmions and disclinations. Increasing extensile activity above a threshold leads to the dissociation of the half-skyrmions and active turbulence. We further analyse isolated active half-skyrmions in an isotropic background and compare the activity-induced velocity fields in simulations to an analytical prediction of the flow. Finally, we show that confining an active blue phase can give rise to a system-wide circulation, in which half-skyrmions and disclinations rotate together.

Chemical and hydrodynamic alignment of an enzyme.

The Journal of chemical physics 150 (2019) 115102-

T Adeleke-Larodo, J Agudo-Canalejo, R Golestanian

Motivated by the implications of the complex and dynamic modular geometry of an enzyme on its motion, we investigate the effect of combining long-range internal and external hydrodynamic interactions due to thermal fluctuations with short-range surface interactions. An asymmetric dumbbell consisting of two unequal subunits, in a nonuniform suspension of a solute with which it interacts via hydrodynamic interactions as well as non-contact surface interactions, is shown to have two alignment mechanisms due to the two types of interactions. In addition to alignment, the chemical gradient results in a drift velocity that is modified by hydrodynamic interactions between the constituents of the enzyme.

Trail-mediated self-interaction.

The Journal of chemical physics 150 (2019) 214111-

WT Kranz, R Golestanian

A number of microorganisms leave persistent trails while moving along surfaces. For single-cell organisms, the trail-mediated self-interaction will influence the dynamics. It has been discussed recently [Kranz et al., Phys. Rev. Lett. 117, 038101 (2016)] that the self-interaction may localize the organism above a critical coupling χc to the trail. Here, we will derive a generalized active particle model capturing the key features of the self-interaction and analyze its behavior for smaller couplings χ < χc. We find that fluctuations in propulsion speed shift the localization transition to stronger couplings.

Tunable self-healing of magnetically propelling colloidal carpets.

Nature communications 10 (2019) 2444-

H Massana-Cid, F Meng, D Matsunaga, R Golestanian, P Tierno

The process of crystallization is difficult to observe for transported, out-of-equilibrium systems, as the continuous energy injection increases activity and competes with ordering. In emerging fields such as microfluidics and active matter, the formation of long-range order is often frustrated by the presence of hydrodynamics. Here we show that a population of colloidal rollers assembled by magnetic fields into large-scale propelling carpets can form perfect crystalline materials upon suitable balance between magnetism and hydrodynamics. We demonstrate a field-tunable annealing protocol based on a controlled colloidal flow above the carpet that enables complete crystallization after a few seconds of propulsion. The structural transition from a disordered to a crystalline carpet phase is captured via spatial and temporal correlation functions. Our findings unveil a novel pathway to magnetically anneal clusters of propelling particles, bridging driven systems with crystallization and freezing in material science.