SO(5) symmetry in the quantum Hall effect in graphene

Fengcheng Wu, Inti Sodemann, Yasufumi Araki, Allan H. Macdonald, Thierry Jolicoeur

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Citations (Scopus)


Electrons in graphene have four flavors associated with low-energy spin and valley degrees of freedom. The fractional quantum Hall effect in graphene is dominated by long-range Coulomb interactions, which are invariant under rotations in spin-valley space. This SU(4) symmetry is spontaneously broken at most filling factors, and also weakly broken by atomic scale valley-dependent and valley-exchange interactions with coupling constants gz and g. In this paper, we demonstrate that when gz=-g, an exact SO(5) symmetry survives which unifies the Néel spin order parameter of the antiferromagnetic state and the XY valley order parameter of the Kekulé distortion state into a single five-component order parameter. The proximity of the highly insulating quantum Hall state observed in graphene at ν=0 to an ideal SO(5) symmetric quantum Hall state remains an open experimental question. We illustrate the physics associated with this SO(5) symmetry by studying the multiplet structure and collective dynamics of filling factor ν=0 quantum Hall states based on exact-diagonalization and low-energy effective theory approaches. This allows to illustrate how manifestations of the SO(5) symmetry would survive even when it is weakly broken.

Original languageEnglish
Article number235432
JournalPhysical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics
Issue number23
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Dec 22

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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