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Axion-like Quasiparticles and Topological States of Matter: Finite Density Corrections of the Chiral Anomaly Vertex

Claudio Corian\`oMario Cret\`iStefano LionettiRiccardo Tommasi
Feb 2024
We investigate the general structure of the chiral anomaly $AVV/AAA$ and $(LLL, RRR)$ vertices, in the presence of chemical potentials in perturbation theory. The study finds application in anomalous transport, whenever chirally unbalanced matter is present, with propagating external currents that are classically conserved. Examples are topological materials and the chiral magnetic effect in the plasma state of matter of the early universe. We classify the minimal number of form factors of the $AVV$ parameterization, by a complete analysis of the Schouten identities in the presence of a heat bath. We show that the longitudinal (anomaly) sector in the axial-vector channel, for on-shell and off-shell photons, is protected against corrections coming from the insertion of a chemical potential in the fermion loop. When the photons are on-shell, we prove that also the transverse sector, in the same channel, is $\mu$-independent and vanishes. The related effective action is shown to be always described by the exchange of a massless anomaly pole, as in the case of vanishing chemical potentials. The pole is interpreted as an interpolating axion-like quasiparticle generated by the anomaly. In each axial-vector channel, it is predicted to be a correlated fermion/antifermion pseudoscalar (axion-like) quasiparticle appearing in the response function, once the material is subjected to an external chiral perturbation. The cancellation of the $\mu$ dependence extends to any chiral current within the Standard Model, including examples like $B$ (baryon), $L$ (lepton), and $B-L$. This holds true irrespective of whether these currents exhibit anomalies.
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