Unveiling Eigenstate Thermalization for Non-Hermitian systems


The Eigenstate Thermalization Hypothesis (ETH) has been highly influential in explaining thermodynamic behavior of closed quantum systems. As of yet, it is unclear whether and how the ETH applies to non-Hermitian systems. Here, we introduce a framework that extends the ETH to non-Hermitian systems. It hinges on a suitable choice of basis composed of right eigenvectors of the non-Hermitian model, a choice we motivate based on physical arguments. In this basis, and after correctly accounting for the nonorthogonality of non-Hermitian eigenvectors, expectation values of local operators reproduce the well-known ETH prediction for Hermitian systems. We illustrate the validity of the modified framework on non-Hermitian random-matrix and Sachdev–Ye–Kitaev models. Our results thus generalize the ETH to the non-Hermitian setting, and they illustrate the importance of the correct choice of basis to evaluate physical properties.

arXiv:2309.00049 [quant-ph]
Ricardo Costa de Almeida
PhD Student (2018 – 2022)
Postdoc (2022 – 2023)
Now Postdoc at Technische Universität Berlin
© Alessio Coser