Topological order is a new kind of order in quantum matter, which corresponds to pattern of long-range quantum entanglement. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Topological_order

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Gauge symmetry is not a symmetry?

I have read before in one of Seiberg's articles something like, that gauge symmetry is not a symmetry but a redundancy in our description, by introducing fake degrees of freedom to facilitate ...
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Simple models that exhibit topological phase transitions

There are a number of physical systems with phases described by topologically protected invariants (fractional quantum Hall, topological insulators) but what are the simplest mathematical models that ...
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What observables are indicative of BCS Cooper pair condensation?

What observables are indicative of BCS Cooper pair condensation? "Thought" experiments and "numerical" experiments are allowed. This question is motivated by the question Has BCS Cooper pair ...
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direct sum of anyons?

In the topological phase of a fractional quantum Hall fluid, the excitations of the ground state (quasiparticles) are anyons, at least conjecturally. There is then supposed to be a braided fusion ...
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Geometric Langlands as a partially defined topological field theory

I have heard from several physicists that the Kapustin-Witten topological twist of $N=4$ 4-dimensional Yang-Mills theory ("the Geometric Langlands twist") is not expected to give rise to fully defined ...
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Topological Charge. What is it Physically?

I have seen the term topological charge defined in an abstract mathematical way as a essentially a labeling scheme for particles which follows certain rules. However I am left guessing when trying to ...
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Basic questions in Majorana fermions

Why any fermion can be written as a combination of two Majorana fermions? Is there any physical meaning in it? Why Majorana fermion can be used for topological quantum computation?
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Zero modes ~ zero eigenvalue modes ~ zero energy modes?

There have been several Phys.SE questions on the topic of zero modes. Such as, e.g., zero-modes (What are zero modes?, Can massive fermions have zero modes?), majorana-zero-modes (Majorana zero ...
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Quantum Hall effect for dummies

In the past few days I've become increasingly intrigued by the QHE, mainly thanks to very interesting questions and answers that have appeared here. Unfortunately, I am as of yet very confused by all ...
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How Non-abelian anyons arise in solid-state systems?

Recently it has been studied non-abelian anyons in some solid-state systems. These states are being studied for the creation and manipulation of qubits in quantum computing. But, how these ...
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What is a resonating valence bond (RVB) state?

There's something known as a "resonating valence bond" (RVB) state, which plays a role in at least some attempts to understand physics of high-$T_c$ superconductors. This, roughly, involves a state ...
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Why are there chiral edge states in the quantum hall effect?

The most popular explanation for the existence of chiral edge states is probably the following: in a magnetic field, electrons move in cyclotron orbits, and such such cyclotron orbits ensure electrons ...
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Do topological superconductors exhibit symmetry-enriched topological order?

Gapped Hamiltonians with a ground-state having long-range entanglement (LRE), are said to have topological order (TO), while if the ground state is short-range entangled (SRE) they are in the trivial ...
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Do Category Theory and/or Quantum Logic add value in physics?

I know they have their adherents, but do more or less esoteric branches of mathematics such as Category Theory and/or Quantum Logic provide powerful tools for new theory development or are they just ...
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Reconciling topological insulators and topological order

We make an important distinction between the topological insulators (which are essentially uncorrelated band insulators, "with a twist") and topological order (which covers a variety of exotic ...
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Quantum dimension in topological entanglement entropy

In 2D the entanglement entropy of a simply connected region goes like \begin{align} S_L \to \alpha L - \gamma + \cdots, \end{align} where $\gamma$ is the topological entanglement entropy. $\gamma$ is ...
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Braiding statistics of anyons from a Non-Abelian Chern-Simon theory

Given a 2+1D Abelian K matrix Chern-Simon theory (with multiplet of internal gauge field $a_I$) partition function: $$ Z=\exp\left[i\int\big( \frac{1}{4\pi} K_{IJ} a_I \wedge d a_J + a \wedge * ...
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Is there a method for differentiating fractional quantum Hall states aside from finding Chern numbers?

The ground state for a quantum Hall system on a torus with fractional filling factor can be classified by the Chern number, which is why the Hall conductance is quantized. Is there another method or ...
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Phase Structure of (Quantum) Gauge Theory

Question: How to classify/characterize the phase structure of (quantum) gauge theory? Gauge Theory (say with a gauge group $G_g$) is a powerful quantum field theoretic(QFT) tool to describe ...
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Quasi 1D insulators with strong spin-orbital interaction

We know that the spin-1 chain realizes the Haldane phase which is an example of symmetry protected topological (SPT) phases (ie short-range entangled phases with symmetry). The Haldane phase is ...
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Can spin-1/2 emerge as a property of quasiparticles if original description of the system was without spin?

When we consider a band structure of some crystal, we can get a model of particle-antiparticle system like electrons and holes. In graphene, for instance, we even get a model of massless Dirac ...
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Wilson Loops as raising operators

Consider a U(1) Chern Simons theory on a torus $\mathbb{T}$: \begin{align} L &= \frac{k}{4\pi} \int_{\mathbb{T}} a \partial a \end{align} where a is some U(1) gauge field, $k\in\mathbb{Z}$ and we ...
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Topological order vs. Symmetry breaking: what does (non-)local order parameter mean?

Topological order are sometimes defined in opposition with the order parameter originating from a symmetry breaking. The latter one being possibly described by a Landau theory, with an order ...
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What is topological degeneracy in condensed matter physics?

What is topological degeneracy in strongly correlated systems such as FQH? What is the difference between topological degeneracy and ordinary degeneracy? Why is topological degeneracy important for ...
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How to understand topological order at finite temperature?

I have heard that in 2+1D, there are no topological order in finite temperature. Topological entanglement entropy $\gamma$ is zero except in zero temperature. However, we still observe some features ...
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Group Cohomology and Topological Field Theories

I have a two-part question: First and foremost: I have been going through the paper by Dijkgraaf and Witten "Group Cohomology and Topological Field Theories". Here they give a general definition for ...
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Why are some solitons formed from bosonic fields fermionic?

Some topological solitons formed from bosonic fields have fermionic statistics. Why?
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Experimental signature of topological superconductor

I was wondering if someone can provides some clear experimental signatures of a topological superconductors ? I was thinking about that, because for topological insulator, one of the hallmarks is ...
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Some questions about anyons?

(1) As we know, we have theories of second quantization for both bosons and fermions. That is, let $W_N$ be the $N$ identical particle Hilbert space of bosons or fermions, then the "many particle" ...
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Chiral coupling in string-nets

In Xiao-Gang Wen's review of topological order http://arxiv.org/abs/1210.1281 , he states in footnote 52 that string-nets are so far unable to produce the chiral coupling between the SU(2) gauge boson ...
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Is resonating valence bond (RVB) states long-range entangled?

Quantum liquid is at the core of condensed matter theory study, examples include superfluid in Bose Hubbard model, quantum spin liquid around the RK point of a quantum dimer model, string-net ...
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Realization of Witten-type topological quantum field theory in condensed matter physics

It is well-known that some exotic phases in condensed matter physics are described by Schwarz-type TQFTs, such as Chern-Simons theory of quantum Hall states. My question is whether there are condensed ...
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What is parafermion in condensed matter physics?

Recently, parafermion becomes hot in condensed matter physics (1:Nature Communications, 4, 1348 (2013),[2]:Phys. Rev. X, 2, 041002 (2012), [3]:Phys. Rev. B, 86, 195126 (2012),[4]:Phys. Rev. B,87, ...
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Questions about Thouless-Kohmoto-Nightingale-den Nijs (TKNN) paper

I am reading the famous and concise Thouless-Kohmoto-Nightingale-den Nijs (TKNN) paper Quantized Hall Conductance in a Two-Dimensional Periodic Potential, Phys. Rev. Lett. 49, 405–408 (1982), where I ...
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Topological Order and Entanglement

I have a question about entanglement in condensed matter physics. It seems that topological order origins from long range entanglement, but what is long range entanglement? It is the same as long ...
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Is the “particle number” of “electrons” well defined in Wen's string-net theory of elementary particles?

According to professor Wen's string-net theory, electrons can be viewed as the elementary excitations of string-net objects. Just like the phonons and magnons are the elementary excitations of ...
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Topological entanglement entropy only defined for a system in the ground state?

What happens to the topological entanglement entropy of a system, when it is driven out of its groundstate by increasing the temperature?
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What is the relationship between string net theory and string / M-theory?

I've just learned from this one of Prof. Wen's answers that there exists a theory called string net theory. Since I've never heard about this before it picks my curiosity, so I`d like to ask some ...
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Whis is the difference between charge fractionalization in 1D and 2D?

Both 1D Polyacetelene and 2D fractional quantum Hall state can support fractional excitations. But as I can see, there are some differences: the ground state of Polyacetelene breaks translational ...
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Why are Topological Superconductors hard to make?

Topological insulators (TI) have already been made in lab. Topological superconductors (TSC), being close cousins of TI, seem harder to make. Why is that? It seems that materials in connection with ...
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Topological ground state degeneracy of SU(N), SO(N), Sp(N) Chern-Simons theory

We know that level-k Abelian 2+1D Chern-Simons theory on the $T^2$ spatial torus gives ground state degeneracy($GSD$): $$GSD=k$$ How about $GSD$ on $T^2$ spatial torus of: SU(N)$_k$ level-k ...
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Definition of short range entanglement

When studying Symmetry Protected Topological phases, one needs to define what a short range entangled (SRE) states means. But there appears to be different definitions that are not equivalent to each ...
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Experimental evidence for non-abelian anyons?

Since non-abelian anyons have become quite fashionable from the point of view of theory. I would like to know, whether there has actually been experimental confirmation of such objects. If you could ...
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What's vison in Z2 resonating valence bond (RVB) state?

I have a problem on the "vison" exitation in the Z2 RVB state. The vison exitation is a topological exitation of the system like topological defect in nematic liquid , if I got it right. Because the ...
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Spontaneous symmetry breaking and time-reversal symmetry

In most textbooks on field theory you read that "spontaneous symmetry breaking implies degeneracy of the ground state". (Like for example in ...
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String-net condensation in 3D

In 2D and 3D quibit models, string-net condensation can happen. In 3D or higher models, is it possible for surfaces (instead of just strings) to condense?
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Degenerate perturbation theory applied to topological degeneracy?

Consider a quantum system described by a gapped Hamiltonian $H_0$ with degenerate ground states (GS), adding a perturbation term $V$ to $H_0$, then the low-energy physics can be described by an ...
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“Topological” notions in physics

I've been trying to make sense recently of the usage of 'topological' in various fields of physics, and get sort of an intuition for what this means in context. This all boils down to my main question ...
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Measurement of topological spin

How do you measure the topological spin of an anyon? So how could an experimental setup look like? Is topological spin an observable at all?
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What are qubits made of in Wen's string-net theory?

In Prof. Xiaogang Wen's theory, photons and electrons are described as quasi-particles appeared as a result of the existence of the string-net liquid, which is the topological order of the qubits that ...