Propagation of many-body localization in an Anderson insulator

Pietro Brighi, Alexios A. Michailidis, Dmitry A. Abanin, Maksym Serbyn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Many-body localization (MBL) is an example of a dynamical phase of matter that avoids thermalization. While the MBL phase is robust to weak local perturbations, the fate of an MBL system coupled to a thermalizing quantum system that represents a "heat bath"is an open question that is actively investigated theoretically and experimentally. In this work, we consider the stability of an Anderson insulator with a finite density of particles interacting with a single mobile impurity - a small quantum bath. We give perturbative arguments that support the stability of localization in the strong interaction regime. Large-scale tensor network simulations of dynamics are employed to corroborate the presence of the localized phase and give quantitative predictions in the thermodynamic limit. We develop a phenomenological description of the dynamics in the strong interaction regime, and we demonstrate that the impurity effectively turns the Anderson insulator into an MBL phase, giving rise to nontrivial entanglement dynamics well captured by our phenomenology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberL220203
JournalPhysical Review B
Issue number22
StatePublished - Jun 1 2022
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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