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Journal Article

Statistical mechanics of Floquet quantum matter: exact and emergent conservation laws


Haldar,  Asmi
Max Planck Institute for the Physics of Complex Systems, Max Planck Society;

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Haldar, A., & Das, A. (2022). Statistical mechanics of Floquet quantum matter: exact and emergent conservation laws. Journal of Physics: Condensed Matter, 34(23): 234001. doi:10.1088/1361-648X/ac03d2.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-000A-9CD8-3
Equilibrium statistical mechanics rests on the assumption of chaotic dynamics of a system modulo the conservation laws of local observables: extremization of entropy immediately gives Gibbs' ensemble (GE) for energy conserving systems and a generalized version of it (GGE) when the number of local conserved quantities is more than one. Through the last decade, statistical mechanics has been extended to describe the late-time behaviour of periodically driven (Floquet) quantum matter starting from a generic state. The structure built on the fundamental assumptions of ergodicity and identification of the relevant conservation laws in this inherently non-equilibrium setting. More recently, it has been shown that the statistical mechanics of Floquet systems has a much richer structure due to the existence of emergent conservation laws: these are approximate but stable conservation laws arising due to the drive, and are not present in the undriven system. Extensive numerical and analytical results support perpetual stability of these emergent (though approximate) conservation laws, probably even in the thermodynamic limit. This banks on the recent finding of a sharp threshold for Floquet thermalization in clean, interacting non-integrable Floquet systems. This indicates to the possibility of stable Floquet phases of matter in disorder-free systems. This review intends to give a self-contained theoretical overview of these developments for a broad physics audience. We conclude by briefly surveying the current experimental scenario.