Heat Transport in Spin Chains with Weak Spin-Phonon Coupling.
- Author(s): Chernyshev, AL;
- Rozhkov, AV
- et al.
Published Web Locationhttps://doi.org/10.1103/physrevlett.116.017204
The heat transport in a system of S=1/2 large-J Heisenberg spin chains, describing closely Sr(2)CuO(3) and SrCuO(2) cuprates, is studied theoretically at T≪J by considering interactions of the bosonized spin excitations with optical phonons and defects. Treating rigorously the multiboson processes, we derive a microscopic spin-phonon scattering rate that adheres to an intuitive picture of phonons acting as thermally populated defects for the fast spin excitations. The mean-free path of the latter exhibits a distinctive T dependence reflecting a critical nature of spin chains and gives a close description of experiments. By the naturalness criterion of realistically small spin-phonon interaction, our approach stands out from previous considerations that require large coupling constants to explain the data and thus imply a spin-Peierls transition, absent in real materials.