Large classes of quantum scarred Hamiltonians from matrix product states

Sanjay Moudgalya, Edward O'Brien, B. Andrei Bernevig, Paul Fendley, Nicolas Regnault

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Scopus citations


Motivated by the existence of exact many-body quantum scars in the Affleck-Kennedy-Lieb-Tasaki (AKLT) chain, we explore the connection between matrix product state (MPS) wave functions and many-body quantum scarred Hamiltonians. We provide a method to systematically search for and construct parent Hamiltonians with towers of exact eigenstates composed of quasiparticles on top of an MPS wave function. These exact eigenstates have low entanglement in spite of being in the middle of the spectrum, thus violating the strong eigenstate thermalization hypothesis. Using our approach, we recover the AKLT chain starting from the MPS of its ground state, and we derive the most general nearest-neighbor Hamiltonian that shares the AKLT quasiparticle tower of exact eigenstates. We further apply this formalism to other simple MPS wave functions, and derive families of Hamiltonians that exhibit AKLT-like quantum scars. As a consequence, we also construct a scar-preserving deformation that connects the AKLT chain to the integrable spin-1 pure biquadratic model. Finally, we also derive other families of Hamiltonians that exhibit types of exact quantum scars, including a U(1)-invariant perturbed Potts model.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number085120
JournalPhysical Review B
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 15 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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