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Charge Friedel oscillations in a Mott insulator

  • Mross, David F.
  • Senthil, T.
Published Article
Publication Date
Jul 14, 2010
Submission Date
Jul 14, 2010
DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevB.84.041102
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When a metal undergoes a transition to an insulator it will lose its electronic Fermi surface. Interestingly in some situations a `ghost' Fermi surface of electrically neutral spin carrying fermions may survive into the insulator. Such a novel ghost Fermi surface has been proposed to underlie the properties of a few different materials but its direct detection has proven elusive. In this paper we show that the ghost Fermi surface leads to slowly decaying spatial oscillations of the electron density near impurities or other defects. These and related oscillations stem from the sharpness of the ghost Fermi surface and are direct analogs of the familiar Friedel oscillations in metals. The oscillation period contains geometric information about the shape of the ghost Fermi surface which can be potentially exploited to detect its existence.

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