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Adiabatic and irreversible classical discrete time crystals

Adrian Ernst, Anna M. E. B. Rossi, Thomas M. Fischer

SciPost Phys. 13, 091 (2022) · published 11 October 2022


We simulate the dynamics of paramagnetic colloidal particles that are placed above a magnetic hexagonal pattern and exposed to an external field periodically changing its direction along a control loop. The conformation of three colloidal particles above one unit cell adiabatically responds with half the frequency of the external field creating a time crystal at arbitrary low frequency. The adiabatic time crystal occurs because of the non-trivial topology of the stationary manifold. When coupling colloidal particles in different unit cells, many body effects cause the formation of topologically isolated time crystals and dynamical phase transitions between different adiabatic reversible and non-adiabatic irreversible space-time-crystallographic arrangements.

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