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Fractionalized Charge Excitations in a Spin Liquid on Partially-Filled



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Recording Details

Speaker(s): 
PIRSA Number: 
14050024

Abstract

Electron charge may fractionalize in a quantum spin liquid Mott insulator. We study the Mott transition from a metal to a cluster Mott insulator in the 1/4- and 1/8-filled pyrochlore lattice systems. Such Mott transitions can arise due to charge localization in clusters or in tetrahedron units, driven by the nearest-neighbor repulsion. The resulting cluster Mott insulator is a quantum spin liquid with spinon Fermi surface, but at the same time a novel fractionalized charge liquid with charge excitations carrying half the electron charge. There exist two emergent U(1) gauge fields or "photons" that mediate interactions between spinons and charge excitations, and between fractionalized charge excitations themselves, respectively. In particular, it is suggested that the emergent photons associated with the fractionalized charge excitations can be measured in X-ray scattering experiments. This and other experimental signatures of the quantum spin and fractionalized charge liquid state are discussed in light of candidate materials with partially-filled bands on pyrochlore lattices. “Fractionalized Charge Excitations in a Spin Liquid on Partially-Filled Pyrochlore Lattice” Electron charge may fractionalize in a quantum spin liquid Mott insulator. We study the Mott transition from a metal to a cluster Mott insulator in the 1/4- and 1/8-filled pyrochlore lattice systems. Such Mott transitions can arise due to charge localization in clusters or in tetrahedron units, driven by the nearest-neighbor repulsion. The resulting cluster Mott insulator is a quantum spin liquid with spinon Fermi surface, but at the same time a novel fractionalized charge liquid with charge excitations carrying half the electron charge. There exist two emergent U(1) gauge fields or "photons" that mediate interactions between spinons and charge excitations, and between fractionalized charge excitations themselves, respectively. In particular, it is suggested that the emergent photons associated with the fractionalized charge excitations can be measured in X-ray scattering experiments. This and other experimental signatures of the quantum spin and fractionalized charge liquid state are discussed in light of candidate materials with partially-filled bands on pyrochlore lattices.