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Disordered quantum critical fixed points from holography

Andrew Lucas, University of Colorado Boulder
Tuesday, February 27, 2024 - 3:00pm
PAT C-421

In this talk I will describe the systematic construction of strongly interacting RG fixed points with a finite disorder strength. Such random-field disorder is quite common in condensed matter experiment, necessitating an understanding of the effects of this disorder on the properties of such fixed points. In the past, such disordered fixed points were accessed using e.g. epsilon expansions in perturbative quantum field theory, using the replica method to treat disorder. I will show that holography gives an alternative picture for RG flows towards disordered fixed points. In holography, spatially inhomogeneous disorder corresponds to inhomogeneous boundary conditions for an asymptotically-AdS spacetime, and the RG flow of the disorder strength is captured by the solution to the Einstein-matter equations. Using this construction, we have found analytically-controlled RG fixed points with a finite disorder strength. Our construction accounts for, and explains, subtle non-perturbative geometric effects that had previously been missed. Our predictions are consistent with conformal perturbation theory when studying disordered holographic CFTs, but the method generalizes and gives new models of disordered metallic quantum criticality.

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