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Localization control born of intertwined quasiperiodicity and non-Hermiticity

Junmo Jeon, SungBin Lee

SciPost Phys. Core 6, 077 (2023) · published 9 November 2023


Quasiperiodic systems are neither randomly disordered nor translationally invariant in the absence of periodic length scales. Based on their incommensurate order, novel physical properties such as critical states and self-similar wavefunctions have been actively discussed. However, in open systems generally described by the non-Hermitian Hamiltonians, it is hardly known how such quasiperiodic order would lead to new phenomena. In this work, we show that the intertwined quasiperiodicity and non-Hermiticity can give rise to striking effects: perfect delocalization of the critical and localized states to the extended states. In particular, we explore the wave function localization character in the Aubry-André-Fibonacci (AAF) model where non-reciprocal hopping phases are present. Here, the AAF model continuously interpolates the two different limits between metal to insulator transition and the critical states, and the non-Hermiticity is encoded in the hopping phase factors. Surprisingly, their interplay results in the perfect delocalization of the states, which is never allowed in quasiperiodic systems with Hermiticity. By quantifying the localization via the inverse participation ratio and the fractal dimension, we discuss that the non-Hermitian hopping phase leads to delicate control of localization characteristics of the wave function. Our work offers (1) emergent delocalization transition in quasiperiodic systems via non-Hermitian hopping phase and (2) detailed localization control of the critical states. In addition, we suggest an experimental realization of controllable localized, critical and delocalized states, using photonic crystals.

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