Dual time scales in simulated annealing of a two-dimensional Ising spin glass
Rubin, Shanon J.
Sandvik, Anders W.
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Citation (published version)Shanon J Rubin, Na Xu, Anders W Sandvik. 2017. "Dual time scales in simulated annealing of a two-dimensional Ising spin glass." Physical Review E, Volume 95, Issue 5, 052133. https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevE.95.052133
We apply a generalized Kibble-Zurek out-of-equilibrium scaling ansatz to simulated annealing when approaching the spin-glass transition at temperature T=0 of the two-dimensional Ising model with random J=±1 couplings. Analyzing the spin-glass order parameter and the excess energy as functions of the system size and the annealing velocity in Monte Carlo simulations with Metropolis dynamics, we find scaling where the energy relaxes slower than the spin-glass order parameter, i.e., there are two different dynamic exponents. The values of the exponents relating the relaxation time scales to the system length, τ∼Lz, are z=8.28±0.03 for the relaxation of the order parameter and z=10.31±0.04 for the energy relaxation. We argue that the behavior with dual time scales arises as a consequence of the entropy-driven ordering mechanism within droplet theory. We point out that the dynamic exponents found here for T→0 simulated annealing are different from the temperature-dependent equilibrium dynamic exponent zeq(T), for which previous studies have found a divergent behavior: zeq(T→0)→∞. Thus, our study shows that, within Metropolis dynamics, it is easier to relax the system to one of its degenerate ground states than to migrate at low temperatures between regions of the configuration space surrounding different ground states. In a more general context of optimization, our study provides an example of robust dense-region solutions for which the excess energy (the conventional cost function) may not be the best measure of success.
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