Measurable consequences of the local breakdown of the concept of temperature

M. Hartmann*, G. Mahler

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


Local temperature defined by a local canonical state of the respective subsystem, does not always exist in quantum many-body systems. Here, we give some examples of how this breakdown of the temperature concept on small length scales might be observed in experiments: Measurements of magnetic properties of an anti-ferromagnetic spin-1 chain. We show that those magnetic properties are in fact strictly local. As a consequence, their measurement reveals whether the local (reduced) state can be thermal. If it is, a temperature may be associated to the measurement results, while this would lead to inconsistencies otherwise.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)579-585
Number of pages7
JournalEurophysics Letters
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


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