Product vacua with boundary states
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Product vacua with boundary states

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We introduce a family of quantum spin chains with nearest-neighbor interactions that can serve to clarify and refine the classification of gapped quantum phases of such systems. The gapped ground states of these models can be described as a product vacuum with a finite number of particles bound to the edges. The numbers of particles, n_L and n_R, that can bind to the left and right edges of the finite chains serve as indices of the particular phase a model belongs to. All these ground states, which we call Product Vacua with Boundary States (PVBS) can be described as Matrix Product States (MPS). We present a curve of gapped Hamiltonians connecting the AKLT model to its representative PVBS model, which has indices n_L=n_R=1. We also present examples with n_L=n_R=J, for any integer J\geq 1, that are related to a recently introduced class of SO(2J+1)-invariant quantum spin chains.

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