Topological phase transitions are typically associated with the formation of gapless states. Spontaneous symmetry breaking can lead to a gap opening, thereby obliterating the topological nature of the system. Here we highlight a completely different destiny for a topological transition in the presence of interaction. Solving a Bernevig-Hughes-Zhang model with local interaction, we show that dynamical quantum fluctuations can lead to the opening of a gap without any symmetry breaking. As we vary the interaction and the bare mass of the model, the continuous gapless topological transition turns into a first-order one, associated with the presence of a massive Dirac fermion at the transition point, showing a Gross-Neveu critical behavior near the quantum critical endpoint. We identify the gap opening as a condensed matter analog of the Coleman-Weinberg mechanism of mass generation.

Topological gap opening without symmetry breaking from dynamical quantum correlations / Paoletti, F.; Fanfarillo, L.; Capone, M.; Amaricci, A.. - In: PHYSICAL REVIEW. B. - ISSN 2469-9950. - 109:7(2024), pp. 1-6. [10.1103/PhysRevB.109.075148]

Topological gap opening without symmetry breaking from dynamical quantum correlations

Paoletti, F.;Fanfarillo, L.;Capone, M.;Amaricci, A.
2024-01-01

Abstract

Topological phase transitions are typically associated with the formation of gapless states. Spontaneous symmetry breaking can lead to a gap opening, thereby obliterating the topological nature of the system. Here we highlight a completely different destiny for a topological transition in the presence of interaction. Solving a Bernevig-Hughes-Zhang model with local interaction, we show that dynamical quantum fluctuations can lead to the opening of a gap without any symmetry breaking. As we vary the interaction and the bare mass of the model, the continuous gapless topological transition turns into a first-order one, associated with the presence of a massive Dirac fermion at the transition point, showing a Gross-Neveu critical behavior near the quantum critical endpoint. We identify the gap opening as a condensed matter analog of the Coleman-Weinberg mechanism of mass generation.
2024
109
7
1
6
075148
https://arxiv.org/abs/2311.10024
Paoletti, F.; Fanfarillo, L.; Capone, M.; Amaricci, A.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11767/137450
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