Faculté des sciences

Dynamical mean field approximation applied to quantum field theory

Akerlund, Oscar ; Forcrand, Philippe de ; Georges, Antoine ; Werner, Philipp

In: Physical Review D, 2013, vol. 88, no. 12, p. 125006

We apply the dynamical mean field theory (DMFT) approximation to the real, scalar φ4 quantum field theory. By comparing to lattice Monte Carlo calculations, perturbation theory and standard mean field theory, we test the quality of the approximation in two, three, four and five dimensions. The quantities considered in these tests are the critical coupling for the transition to the ordered phase... More

Add to personal list
    Summary
    We apply the dynamical mean field theory (DMFT) approximation to the real, scalar φ4 quantum field theory. By comparing to lattice Monte Carlo calculations, perturbation theory and standard mean field theory, we test the quality of the approximation in two, three, four and five dimensions. The quantities considered in these tests are the critical coupling for the transition to the ordered phase and the associated critical exponents ν and β. We also map out the phase diagram in the most relevant case of four dimensions. In two and three dimensions, DMFT incorrectly predicts a first-order phase transition for all bare quartic couplings, which is problematic, because the second-order nature of the phase transition of lattice φ4 theory is crucial for taking the continuum limit. Nevertheless, by extrapolating the behavior away from the phase transition, one can obtain critical couplings and critical exponents. They differ from those of mean field theory and are much closer to the correct values. In four dimensions the transition is second order for small quartic couplings and turns weakly first order as the coupling increases beyond a tricritical value. In dimensions five and higher, DMFT gives qualitatively correct results, predicts reasonable values for the critical exponents and considerably more accurate critical couplings than standard mean field theory. The approximation works best for small values of the quartic coupling. We investigate the change from first- to second-order transition in the local limit of DMFT which is computationally much cheaper. We also discuss technical issues related to the convergence of the nonlinear self-consistency equation solver and the solution of the effective single-site model using Fourier-space Monte Carlo updates in the presence of a φ4 interaction.