Confinement-induced impurity states in spin chains

Joseph Vovrosh, Hongzheng Zhao, Johannes Knolle, Alvise Bastianello

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Quantum simulators hold the promise of probing central questions of high-energy physics in tunable condensed matter platforms, for instance, the physics of confinement. Local defects can be an obstacle in these setups, harming their simulation capabilities. However, defects in the form of impurities can also be useful as probes of many-body correlations and may lead to fascinating new phenomena themselves. Here, we investigate the interplay between impurity and confinement physics in a basic spin chain setup, showing the emergence of exotic excitations as impurity-meson bound states with a long lifetime. For weak confinement, semiclassical approximations can describe the capture process in a meson-impurity scattering event. In the strong-confining regime, intrinsic quantum effects are visible through the quantization of the emergent bound state energies which can be readily probed in quantum simulators.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberL100301
JournalPhysical Review B
Issue number10
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2022


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