Entanglement entropy and boundary renormalization group flow: Exact results in the Ising universality class

Eyal Cornfeld, Eran Sela

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The entanglement entropy in one-dimensional critical systems with boundaries has been associated with the noninteger ground-state degeneracy. This quantity, being a characteristic of boundary fixed points, decreases under renormalization group flow, as predicted by the g theorem. Here, using conformal field theory methods, we exactly calculate the entanglement entropy in the boundary Ising universality class. Our expression can be separated into the well-known bulk term and a boundary entanglement term, displaying a universal flow between two boundary conditions, in accordance with the g theorem. These results are obtained within the replica trick approach, where we show that the associated twist field, a central object generating the geometry of an n-sheeted Riemann surface, can be bosonized, giving simple analytic access to multiple quantities of interest. We argue that our result applies to other models falling into the same universality class. This includes the vicinity of the quantum critical point of the two-channel Kondo model, allowing one to track in real space the presence of a region containing one-half of a qubit with entropy 12log(2), associated with a free local Majorana fermion.

Original languageEnglish
Article number075153
JournalPhysical Review B
Issue number7
StatePublished - 24 Aug 2017


FundersFunder number
Seventh Framework Programme618188
Marie Curie
Israel Science Foundation1243/13


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