Monday, May 20, 2013

1305.4118 (John M. Tranquada)

Spins, Stripes, and Superconductivity in Hole-Doped Cuprates    [PDF]

John M. Tranquada
One of the major themes in correlated electron physics over the last quarter century has been the problem of high-temperature superconductivity in hole-doped copper-oxide compounds. Fundamental to this problem is the competition between antiferromagnetic spin correlations, a symptom of strong Coulomb interactions, and the kinetic energy of the doped carriers, which favors delocalization. After discussing some of the early challenges in the field, I describe the experimental picture provided by a variety of spectroscopic and transport techniques. Then I turn to the technique of neutron scattering, and discuss how it is used to determine spin correlations, especially in model systems of quantum magnetism. Neutron scattering and complementary techniques have determined the extent to which antiferromagnetic spin correlations survive in the cuprate superconductors. One experimental case involves the ordering of spin and charge stripes. I first consider related measurements on model compounds, such as La(2-x)Sr(x)NiO(4+d), and then discuss the case of La(2-x)Ba(x)CuO(4). In the latter system, recent transport studies have demonstrated that quasi-two-dimensional superconductivity coexists with the stripe order, but with frustrated phase order between the layers. This has led to new concepts for the coexistence of spin order and superconductivity. While the relevance of stripe correlations to high-temperature superconductivity remains a subject of controversy, there is no question that stripes are an intriguing example of electron matter that results from strong correlations.
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