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Phase diagram of an extended classical dimer model

D. Charrier, F. Alet

par Webmaster - 26 mai 2010

We present an extensive numerical study of the critical behavior of dimer models in three dimensions, focusing on the phase transition between Coulomb and crystalline columnar phases. The case of attractive interactions between parallel dimers on a plaquette was shown to undergo a continuous phase transition with critical exponents close to those of the O(N) tricritical universality class, a situation which is not easily captured by conventional field theories. That the dimer model is exactly fine-tuned to a highly symmetric point is a non trivial statement which needs careful numerical investigation. In this paper, we perform an extensive Monte Carlo study of a generalized dimer model with plaquette and cubic interactions and determine its extended phase diagram. We find that when both interactions favor alignment of the dimers, the phase transition is first order, in almost all cases. On the opposite, when interactions compete, the transition becomes continuous, with a critical exponent \eta 0.2. The existence of a tricritical point between the two regimes is confirmed by simulations on very large size systems and a flowgram method. In addition, we find a highly-degenerate crystalline phase at very low temperature in the frustrated regime which is separated from the columnar phase by a first order transition.

Phys. Rev. B 82, 014429 (2010), arXiv:1005.2522