Eigenstate thermalization hypothesis and eigenstate-To-eigenstate fluctuations

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We investigate the extent to which the eigenstate thermalization hypothesis (ETH) is valid or violated in the nonintegrable and the integrable spin-1/2 XXZ chains. We perform the energy-resolved analysis of statistical properties of matrix elements of observables in the energy eigenstate basis. The Hilbert space is divided into energy shells of constant width, and a block submatrix is constructed whose columns and rows correspond to the eigenstates in the respective energy shells. In each submatrix, we measure the second moment of off-diagonal elements in a column. The columnar second moments are distributed with a finite variance for finite-sized systems. We show that the relative variance of the columnar second moments decreases as the system size increases in the non-integrable system. The self-Averaging behavior indicates that the energy eigenstates are statistically equivalent to each other, which is consistent with the ETH. In contrast, the relative variance does not decrease with the system size in the integrable system. The persisting eigenstate-To-eigenstate fluctuation implies that the matrix elements cannot be characterized with the energy parameters only. Our result explains the origin for the breakdown of the fluctuation dissipation theorem in the integrable system. The eigenstate-To-eigenstate fluctuations sheds a new light on the meaning of the ETH.

Original languageEnglish
Article number012129
JournalPhysical Review E
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2021


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