Multiple states and thermodynamic limits in short-ranged Ising spin-glass models

C. M. Newman, D. L. Stein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We propose a test to distinguish, both numerically and theoretically, between the two competing pictures of short-ranged Ising spin glasses at low temperature: chaotic size dependence. Scaling theories in which at most two pure states (related by a global spin flip) occur require that finite-volume correlations (with, say, periodic boundary conditions) have a well-defined thermodynamic limit. We argue, however, that the picture based on the infinite-ranged Sherrington-Kirkpatrick model, with many noncongruent pure states, leads to a breakdown of the thermodynamic limit. The argument combines rigorous and heuristic elements; one of the fomer is a proof that in the infinite-ranged model itself, non-self-averaging implies chaotic size dependence. Numerical tests, based on chaotic size dependence, could provide a more sensitive measure than the usual overlap distribution P(q) in determining the number of pure states.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)973-982
Number of pages10
JournalPhysical Review B
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1992

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics


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