Ising-like transitions in the O(nn) loop model on the square lattice


We explore the phase diagram of the O(nn) loop model on the square lattice in the (x,n)(x,n) plane, where xx is the weight of a lattice edge covered by a loop. These results are based on transfer-matrix calculations and finite-size scaling. We express the correlation length associated with the staggered loop density in the transfer-matrix eigenvalues. The finite-size data for this correlation length, combined with the scaling formula, reveal the location of critical lines in the diagram. For n>>2n>>2 we find Ising-like phase transitions associated with the onset of a checkerboard-like ordering of the elementary loops, i.e., the smallest possible loops, with the size of an elementary face, which cover precisely one half of the faces of the square lattice at the maximum loop density. In this respect, the ordered state resembles that of the hard-square lattice gas with nearest-neighbor exclusion, and the finiteness of nn represents a softening of its particle-particle potentials. We also determine critical points in the range 2n2-2\leq n\leq 2. It is found that the topology of the phase diagram depends on the set of allowed vertices of the loop model. Depending on the choice of this set, the n>2n>2 transition may continue into the dense phase of the n2n \leq 2 loop model, or continue as a line of n2n \leq 2 O(nn) multicritical points

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