Dynamics of mobile impurities in one-dimensional quantum liquids

Thumbnail Image

Persistent link to this item

View Statistics

Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title


Dynamics of mobile impurities in one-dimensional quantum liquids

Published Date




Thesis or Dissertation


We study the dynamics of mobile impurities in a one-dimensional quantum liquid. Due to singular scattering with low-energy excitations of the host liquid, the impurity spectral properties become strongly renormalized even at weak coupling. This leads to universal phenomena with no higher-dimensional counterparts, such as lattice-free Bloch oscillations, power-law threshold behavior in the impurity spectral function and a quantum phase transition as the impurity mass exceeds a critical value. The additional possibility of integrability in one-dimension leads to the absence of thermal viscosity at special points in parameter space. The vanishing of the phonon-mediated Casimir interaction between separate impurities can be understood on the same footing. We explore these remarkable phenomena by developing an effective low-energy theory that identifies the proper collective coordinates of the dressed impurity, and their coupling to the low-energy excitations of the host liquid. The main appeal of our approach lies in its ability to describe a dynamic response using effective parameters which obey exact thermodynamic relations. The latter may be extracted using powerful numerical or analytical techniques available in one-dimension, yielding asymptotically exact results for the low-energy impurity dynamics.


University of Minnesota Ph.D. dissertation. August 2014. Major: Physics. Advisor: Alex Kamenev. 1 computer file (PDF); vii, 96 pages.

Related to




Series/Report Number

Funding information

Isbn identifier

Doi identifier

Previously Published Citation

Suggested citation

Schecter, Michael. (2014). Dynamics of mobile impurities in one-dimensional quantum liquids. Retrieved from the University Digital Conservancy, https://hdl.handle.net/11299/167460.

Content distributed via the University Digital Conservancy may be subject to additional license and use restrictions applied by the depositor. By using these files, users agree to the Terms of Use. Materials in the UDC may contain content that is disturbing and/or harmful. For more information, please see our statement on harmful content in digital repositories.