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Information, Physics, and Computation$
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Marc Mézard and Andrea Montanari

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780198570837

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198570837.001.0001

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Spin glasses

Spin glasses

(p.241) 12 Spin glasses
Information, Physics, and Computation

Marc Mézard

Andrea Montanari

Oxford University Press

This chapter describes random magnetic systems, ‘spin glasses’, by special random ensembles of factor graphs. It also studies the glass phase, characterized by a freezing of the spins, in the framework of equilibrium statistical physics. It describes the two types of spin glass phase transitions that have been encountered in mean field models, and introduces the relevant order parameters to describe them based on the notion of overlap. Special attention is given to the concept of frustration — a basic ingredient of spin glasses — which is discussed in conjunction with gauge transformations.

Keywords:   spin glass, glass phase, phase transition, order parameter, frustration, gauge transformations

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