Amanda Young sitting on a window bench inside the LMU Physics builduing.

MCQST Distinguished PostDoc 2019

Technical University of Munich

TUM School of Computation, Information and Technology

Boltzmannstraße 3

85748 Garching

+49 89 289 17086


Research Webpage

I love the diversity of mathematical techniques used to approach and understand questions in mathematical physics. There is always a creative solution.


Main research focus: my research focuses on spectral and dynamical properties of quantum lattice systems.

A central question in the low-energy physics of quantum systems is whether the excitations above the ground states are gapped or gapless. My goal is to develop techniques for rigorously establishing spectral gaps through analyzing key quantum systems. Since joining MCQST, I have been investigating the spectral gap and low-lying excitations for fractional quantum Hall (FQH) systems. In a recent work, we proved a non-vanishing gap for an effective Hamiltonian of a 1/3-filled FQH system in the thin cylinder regime.



Quasi-Locality Bounds for Quantum Lattice Systems. Part II. Perturbations of Frustration-Free Spin Models with Gapped Ground States

B. Nachtergaele, R. Sims, A. Young

Ann. Henri Poincaré 23, 393–511 (2022).

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  • We study the stability with respect to a broad class of perturbations of gapped ground-state phases of quantum spin systems defined by frustration-free Hamiltonians. The core result of this work is a proof using the Bravyi–Hastings–Michalakis (BHM) strategy that under a condition of local topological quantum order (LTQO), the bulk gap is stable under perturbations that decay at long distances faster than a stretched exponential. Compared to previous work, we expand the class of frustration-free quantum spin models that can be handled to include models with more general boundary conditions, and models with discrete symmetry breaking. Detailed estimates allow us to formulate sufficient conditions for the validity of positive lower bounds for the gap that are uniform in the system size and that are explicit to some degree. We provide a survey of the BHM strategy following the approach of Michalakis and Zwolak, with alterations introduced to accommodate more general than just periodic boundary conditions and more general lattices. We express the fundamental condition known as LTQO by means of an indistinguishability radius, which we introduce. Using the uniform finite-volume results, we then proceed to study the thermodynamic limit. We first study the case of a unique limiting ground state and then also consider models with spontaneous breaking of a discrete symmetry. In the latter case, LTQO cannot hold for all local observables. However, for perturbations that preserve the symmetry, we show stability of the gap and the structure of the broken symmetry phases. We prove that the GNS Hamiltonian associated with each pure state has a non-zero spectral gap above the ground state.

DOI: 10.1007/s00023-021-01086-5

Spectral Gaps and Incompressibility in a ν = 1/3 Fractional Quantum Hall System

B. Nachtergaele, S. Warzel, A. Young

Communications in Mathematical Physics 383, 1093–1149 (2021).

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We study an effective Hamiltonian for the standard ν=1/3 fractional quantum Hall system in the thin cylinder regime. We give a complete description of its ground state space in terms of what we call Fragmented Matrix Product States, which are labeled by a certain family of tilings of the one-dimensional lattice. We then prove that the model has a spectral gap above the ground states for a range of coupling constants that includes physical values. As a consequence of the gap we establish the incompressibility of the fractional quantum Hall states. We also show that all the ground states labeled by a tiling have a finite correlation length, for which we give an upper bound. We demonstrate by example, however, that not all superpositions of tiling states have exponential decay of correlations.

DOI: 10.1007/s00220-021-03997-0

Low-complexity eigenstates of a ν = 1/3 fractional quantum Hall system

B. Nachtergaele, S. Warzel, A. Young

Journal of Physics A: Mathematical and Theoretical 54, 1 (2020).

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We identify the ground-state of a truncated version of Haldane's pseudo-potential Hamiltonian in the thin cylinder geometry as being composed of exponentially many fragmented matrix product states. These states are constructed by lattice tilings and their properties are discussed. We also report on a proof of a spectral gap, which implies the incompressibility of the underlying fractional quantum Hall liquid at maximal filling ν = 1/3. Low-energy excitations and an extensive number of many-body scars at positive energy density, but nevertheless low complexity, are also identified using the concept of tilings.

DOI: 10.1088/1751-8121/abca73

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