We propose and study a wave function describing an interacting three-dimensional fractional chiral hinge insulator (FCHI) constructed by Gutzwiller projection of two noninteracting second-order topological insulators with chiral hinge modes at half filling. We use large-scale variational Monte Carlo computations to characterize the model states via the entanglement entropy and charge-spin fluctuations. We show that the FCHI possesses fractional chiral hinge modes characterized by a central charge c=1 and Luttinger parameter K=1/2, like the edge modes of a Laughlin 1/2 state. The bulk and surface topology is characterized by the topological entanglement entropy (TEE) correction to the area law. While our computations indicate a vanishing bulk TEE, we show that the gapped surfaces host an unconventional two-dimensional topological phase. In a clear departure from the physics of a Laughlin 1/2 state, we find a TEE per surface compatible with (ln2)/2, half that of a Laughlin 1/2 state. This value cannot be obtained from topological quantum field theory for purely two-dimensional systems. For the sake of completeness, we also investigate the topological degeneracy.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
- Condensed Matter Physics