Quantum ergodicity and Benjamini-Schramm convergence of hyperbolic surfaces

Etienne Le Masson, Tuomas Sahlsten

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)
289 Downloads (Pure)


We present a quantum ergodicity theorem for fixed spectral window and sequences of compact hyperbolic surfaces converging to the hyperbolic plane in the sense of Benjamini and Schramm. This addresses a question posed by Colin de Verdi\`{e}re. Our theorem is inspired by results for eigenfunctions on large regular graphs by Anantharaman and the first-named author. It applies in particular to eigenfunctions on compact arithmetic surfaces in the level aspect, which connects it to a question of Nelson on Maass forms. The proof is based on a wave propagation approach recently considered by Brooks, Lindenstrauss and the first-named author on discrete graphs. It does not use any microlocal analysis, making it quite different from the usual proof of quantum ergodicity in the large eigenvalue limit. Moreover, we replace the wave propagator with renormalised averaging operators over discs, which simplifies the analysis and allows us to make use of a general ergodic theorem of Nevo. As a consequence of this approach, we require little regularity on the observables.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3425-3460
Number of pages36
JournalDuke Mathematical Journal
Issue number18
Early online date13 Oct 2017
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2017


  • math.SP
  • math-ph
  • math.DS
  • math.MP
  • 81Q50, 37D40, 11F72

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