We develop a nonperturbative approach to the bulk polarization of crystalline electric insulators in $d\geq1$ dimensions. Formally, we define polarization via the response to background fluxes of both charge and lattice translation symmetries. In this approach, the bulk polarization is related to properties of magnetic monopoles under translation symmetries. Specifically, in $2d$ the monopole is a source of $2\pi$-flux, and the polarization is determined by the crystal momentum of the $2\pi$-flux. In $3d$ the polarization is determined by the projective representation of translation symmetries on Dirac monopoles. Our approach also leads to a concrete scheme to calculate polarization in $2d$, which in principle can be applied even to strongly interacting systems. For open boundary condition, the bulk polarization leads to an altered `boundary' Luttinger theorem (constraining the Fermi surface of surface states) and also to modified Lieb-Schultz-Mattis theorems on the boundary, which we derive.
- Pub Date:
- September 2019
- Condensed Matter - Mesoscale and Nanoscale Physics;
- Condensed Matter - Strongly Correlated Electrons;
- High Energy Physics - Theory
- 7+8 pages, 3 figures, updated discussion on magnetic translations