Random geometry and the Kardar-Parisi-Zhang universality class Articles uri icon

publication date

  • March 2015


  • 17 (033018)

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1367-2630


  • We consider a model of a quenched disordered geometry in which a random metric is defined on R-2, which is flat on average and presents short-range correlations. We focus on the statistical properties of balls and geodesics, i.e., circles and straight lines. We show numerically that the roughness of a ball of radius R scales as R-x, with a fluctuation exponent x similar or equal to 1/3, while the lateral spread of the minimizing geodesic between two points at a distance L grows as L-zeta, with wandering exponent value zeta similar or equal to 2/3. Results on related first-passage percolation problems lead us to postulate that the statistics of balls in these random metrics belong to the Kardar-Parisi-Zhang universality class of surface kinetic roughening, with. and. relating to critical exponents characterizing a corresponding interface growth process. Moreover, we check that the one-point and two-point correlators converge to the behavior expected for the Airy-2 process characterized by the Tracy-Widom (TW) probability distribution function of the largest eigenvalue of large random matrices in the Gaussian unitary ensemble (GUE). Nevertheless extreme-value statistics of ball coordinates are given by the TW distribution associated with random matrices in the Gaussian orthogonal ensemble. Furthermore, we also find TW-GUE statistics with good accuracy in arrival times.


  • random geometry; kinetic roughening; kardar–parisi–zhang universality class; tracy–widom distribution