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Xiao-Gang Wen

Portrait de Xiao-Gang Wen
BMO Financial Group Isaac Newton Chair in Theoretical Physics at Perimeter Institute

Area of Research:
Email: xwen@perimeterinstitute.ca
Phone: x8573

Xiao-Gang Wen is the BMO Financial Group Isaac Newton Chair in Theoretical Physics at Perimeter Institute. He received his Ph.D from Princeton University in 1987. Wen became a five-year member of IAS at Princeton in 1989 and joint MIT in 1991. Wen is a Cecil and Ida Green professor of Physics at MIT, and a Distinguished Moore Scholar at Caltech.

Wen's expertise is in condensed matter theory of strongly correlated electronic systems. He introduced the notion of topological order (1989) and quantum order (2002), to describe a new class of matter states. This opens up a new research direction in condensed matter physics. He found that states with topological order contain non-trivial boundary excitations and developed chiral Luttinger theory for the boundary states (1990). The boundary states can become ideal conduction channel which may leads to device application of topological phases. He proposed the simplest topological order -- Z2 topological order (1990), which turns out to be the topological order in the toric code. He also proposed a special class of topological order: non-Abelian quantum Hall states. They contain emergent particles with non-Abelian statistics which generalizes the well known Bose and Fermi statistics. Non-Abelian particles may allow us to perform fault tolerant quantum computations. With Levin, he found that string-net condensations can give rise to a large class of topological orders (2005). In particular, string-net condensation provides a unified origin of photons, electrons, and other elementary particles (2003). It unifies two fundamental phenomena: gauge interactions and Fermi statistics. He pointed out that topological order is nothing but the pattern of long range entanglements. This led to a notion of symmetry protected topological (SPT) order (short-range entangled states with symmetry) and its description by group cohomology of the symmetry group (2011). The notion of SPT order generalizes the notion of topological insulator to interacting cases. He also proposed the SU(2) gauge theory of high temperature superconductors (1996).

AFFILIATIONS

University of Waterloo. [Potential PhD students should apply to the Physics Department at the University of Waterloo. Students interested in pursuing studies for an MSc should apply to Perimeter's

Research Interests

Xiao-Gang Wen's research field is condensed matter theory. He has been working on strongly correlated electronic systems, which include:
Theory of Highly Entangled Quantum Systems (such as the theory of topological/quantum order)
Mathematical Foundation of Many-body Entanglements (tensor category theory and group cohomology theory)
Theory of High Temperature Superconductors
Origin and Unification of Elementary Particles (such as light and electrons)
Theory of Quantum Hall Effect and Non-Abelian Statistics

Recent Publications

  • Xie Chen, Zheng-Cheng Gu, Zheng-Xin Liu, Xiao-Gang Wen Symmetry protected topological orders in interacting bosonic systems Science 338, 1604 (2012) arXiv: 1301.0861
  • Zheng-Xin Liu, Xiao-Gang Wen Symmetry protected Spin Quantum Hall phases in 2-Dimensions Phys. Rev. Lett. 110, 067205 (2013) arXiv: 1205.7024
  • Xiao-Gang Wen Classifying gauge anomalies through symmetry-protected trivial orders and classifying gravitational anomalies through topological orders Phys. Rev. D 88, 045013 (2013)
  • Xiao-Gang Wen A lattice non-perturbative definition of an SO(10) chiral gauge theory and its induced standard model CPL in press. arXiv: 1305.1045
  • Evelyn Tang and Xiao-Gang Wen Superconductivity with intrinsic topological order induced by pure Coulomb interaction and time-reversal symmetry breaking PRB in press
  • Lattice Model for Fermionic Toric Code Zheng-Cheng Gu, Zhenghan Wang, Xiao-Gang Wen arXiv: 1309.7032
  • Constructing symmetric topological phases of bosons in three dimensions via fermionic projective construction and dyon condensation Peng Ye, Xiao-Gang Wen arXiv: 1303.3572

Seminars

  • Topologically ordered materials and Superconductivity induced by pure Coulomb interaction and orbital T-breaking CIFAR on Quantum Materials, Vancouver
  • Topological order and long range entanglement -- A unification of information and matter TOPNES, Edingburg
  • Topological order and long-range entanglement -- can elementary particles emerge from qubits? IAS, Princeton
  • Topological order and long range entanglement -- A unification of information and matter Dyson 90th Birthday, Singapore
  • Highly entangled quantum materials and Superconductivity induced by pure Coulomb interaction and orbital T-breaking Eurasia-Pacific Conference 2013 on Strongly Correlated Electrons, S. Korea
  • Gapped quantum matter, many-body quantum entanglement, and (symmetry-protected) topological orders The Euler International Mathematical Institute St Petersburg
  • Long-range entangled quantum matter and a unification of force, matter, and information StatPhys25, Seoul, S. Korea
  • Long-range entangled quantum matter and a unification of force, matter, and information Weihai, China
  • SPT orders, gauge anomalies, and a lattice definition of anomaly-free chiral theories IAS Tsinghua Univ. Beijing
  • Superconductivity induced by pure Coulomb interaction and T-breaking Beijing forum on high Tc superconductivity. Teng-Chong, China
  • The world of long-range entanglement -- A unification of many research fields: condensed matter, particle physics, string theory, quantum information, mathematical physics, quantum foundation, ... DRSTP, Holland
  • SPT orders, gauge anomalies, and a lattice definition of anomaly-free chiral theories Simons Center for Geometry and Physics, Stoney Brook
  • The mathematical languages for patterns of quantum entanglement AMS meeting, Boston
  • The mathematical languages for patterns of quantum entanglement Math Dept., Toronto Univ.