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Department of Physics

Dr. Ying Ran

assistant professor


Phone: 617-552-6397
Higgins Hall 330H

Group Website:


Ph.D., Physics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge
B.S., Physics, Peking University, Beijing, China

Areas of Research

My research interests lie in quantum condensed matter theory. One major direction of my work is to study electronic systems with strong interaction. Surprisingly, strongly correlated electrons in various experimental systems can sometimes (for example, fractional quantum Hall effect) be understood from collective degrees of freedom which are fundamentally different from electronic degrees of freedom. I am interested in frustrated magnets and high-Tc superconductors where such fascinating physics may be realized. I am also interested in topological aspects of condensed matter system such as topological defects and topological band insulators. In these systems there are often topologically protected excitations and effects that can be detected experimentally.

Selected Publications

  • “Topological Insulators in Three Dimensions from Spontaneous Symmetry Breaking,” Y. Zhang, Y. Ran, and A. Vishwanath, arXiv:0904.0690, Phys. Rev. B 79, 245331 (2009).
  • “Helical Metal Inside a Topological Band Insulator,” Y. Ran, Y. Zhang, and A. Vishwanath, arXiv:0810.5121, Nature Phys. 5, 289 (2009).
  • “A Funtional Renormalization Group Study of the Pairing Symmetry and Pairing Mechanism of the FeAs Based High Temperature Superconductors,” F. Wang, H. Zhai, Y. Ran, A. Vishwanath, and D.-H. Lee, arXiv:0807.0498, Phys. Rev. Lett. 102, 047005 (2009).
  • “A Direct Transition Between a Neel Ordered Mott Insulator and a dx2-y2 Superconductor on the Square Lattice,” Y. Ran, A. Vishwanath, and D.-H. Lee, arXiv:0806.2321.
  • “Nodal Spin Density Wave and Band Topology of the FeAs Based Materials,” Y. Ran, F. Wang, H. Zhai, A. Vishwanath, and D.-H. Lee, arXiv:0805.3535, Phys. Rev. B 79, 014505 (2009).
  • “Topological Surface States in Three-Dimensional Magnetic Insulators,” J. E. Moore, Y. Ran, and X.-G. Wen, arXiv:0804.4527, Phys. Rev. Lett. 101, 186805 (2008).
  • “Properties of an Algebraic Spin Liquid on the Kagome Lattice,” M. Hermele, Y. Ran, P. A. Lee, and X.-G. Wen, arXiv:0803.1150, Phys. Rev. B 77, 224413 (2008).
  • “Spin-Charge Separated Solitons in a Topological Band Insulator,” Y. Ran, A. Vishwanath, and D.-H. Lee, arXiv:0801.0627, Phys. Rev. Lett. 101, 086801 (2008).
  • “Spontaneous Spin Ordering of Dirac Spin Liquid in a Magnetic Field,” Y. Ran, W.-H. Ko, P. A. Lee, and X.-G. Wen,” arXiv:0710.4574, Phys. Rev. Lett. 102, 047205 (2009).
  • “Projected Wavefunction Study of Spin-1/2 Heisenberg Model on Kagome Lattice,” Y. Ran, M. Hermele, P. A. Lee, and X.-G. Wen, arXiv:cond-mat/0611414, Phys. Rev. Lett. 98, 117205 (2007).
  • “Detecting Topological Order Through a Continuous Quantum Phase Transition,” Y. Ran, and X.-G. Wen, arXiv:cond-mat/0509155, Phys. Rev. Lett. 96, 026802 (2006).