Entanglement, non-hermiticity, and duality

Li-Mei Chen, Shuai A. Chen, Peng Ye

SciPost Phys. 11, 003 (2021) · published 9 July 2021


Usually duality process keeps energy spectrum invariant. In this paper, we provide a duality, which keeps entanglement spectrum invariant, in order to diagnose quantum entanglement of non-Hermitian non-interacting fermionic systems. We limit our attention to non-Hermitian systems with a complete set of biorthonormal eigenvectors and an entirely real energy spectrum. The original system has a reduced density matrix $\rho_\mathrm{o}$ and the real space is partitioned via a projecting operator $\mathcal{R}_{\mathrm o}$. After dualization, we obtain a new reduced density matrix $\rho_{\mathrm{d}}$ and a new real space projector $\mathcal{R}_{\mathrm d}$. Remarkably, entanglement spectrum and entanglement entropy keep invariant. Inspired by the duality, we defined two types of non-Hermitian models, upon $\mathcal R_{\mathrm{o}}$ is given. In type-I exemplified by the ``non-reciprocal model'', there exists at least one duality such that $\rho_{\mathrm{d}}$ is Hermitian. In other words, entanglement information of type-I non-Hermitian models with a given $\mathcal{R}_{\mathrm{o}}$ is entirely controlled by Hermitian models with $\mathcal{R}_{\mathrm{d}}$. As a result, we are allowed to apply known results of Hermitian systems to efficiently obtain entanglement properties of type-I models. On the other hand, the duals of type-II models, exemplified by ``non-Hermitian Su-Schrieffer-Heeger model'', are always non-Hermitian. For the practical purpose, the duality provides a potentially \textit{efficient} computation route to entanglement of non-Hermitian systems. Via connecting different models, the duality also sheds lights on either trivial or nontrivial role of non-Hermiticity played in quantum entanglement, paving the way to potentially systematic classification and characterization of non-Hermitian systems from the entanglement perspective.

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