Measuring space-group symmetry fractionalization in Z2 spin liquids

Michael P. Zaletel, Yuan Ming Lu, Ashvin Vishwanath

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


The interplay of symmetry and topological order leads to a variety of distinct phases of matter, the symmetry enriched topological (SET) phases. Here we discuss physical observables that distinguish different SETs in the context of Z2 quantum spin liquids with SU(2) spin rotation invariance. We focus on the cylinder geometry, and show that ground-state quantum numbers for different topological sectors are robust invariants which can be used to identify the SET phase. More generally, these invariants are related to 1D symmetry protected topological phases when viewing the cylinder geometry as a 1D spin chain. In particular, we show that the kagome spin liquid SET can be determined by measurements on one ground state, by wrapping the kagome in a few different ways on the cylinder. In addition to guiding numerical studies, this approach provides a transparent way to connect bosonic and fermionic mean-field theories of spin liquids. When fusing quasiparticles, it correctly predicts nontrivial phase factors for combining their space group quantum numbers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number195164
JournalPhysical Review B
Issue number19
StatePublished - Nov 29 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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