Switching Magnetism and Superconductivity with Spin-Polarized Current in Iron-Based Superconductor

Journal: Physical Review Letters

Published: 2017-11-27

DOI: 10.1103/physrevlett.119.227001

Affiliations: 14

Authors: 14

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Research Highlight

Flipping the superconductivity switch

© ROBERT BROOK/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY/Getty

© ROBERT BROOK/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY/Getty

Scientists have developed a new technique for turning superconductivity on and off, paving the way for new electronic and magnetic devices, according to a study published in Physical Review Letters.

Below certain temperatures iron-based superconductors can conduct electricity with virtually zero resistance, and exhibit superconducting and magnetic behaviours at the same time. Scientists, however, still lack detailed understanding of the complex atomic-level properties that underlie this behaviour.    

Led by researchers from the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, a team of physicists from South Korea and the United States have used a spin-polarized scanning tunnelling microscope to pass a metal tip just a few atoms wide over the surface of an iron-based superconductor, allowing them to probe its magnetic and electronic properties to be turned on and off.

The work could lead to new memory devices and transistors that can control superconductivity.

Supported content

  1. Phys Rev Lett, 119, 227001 (2017). doi: 10.1103/physrevlett.119.227001
Institutions FC
KAIST Department of Physics, South Korea 0.32
Department of Physics, POSTECH, South Korea 0.07
Center for Artificial Low Dimensional Electronic Systems (CALDES), IBS, South Korea 0.07
Department of Applied Physics and Applied Mathematics (APAM), CU, United States of America (USA) 0.07
Department of Physics and Astronomy, SNU, South Korea 0.07
Department of Physics, Chonnam National University, South Korea 0.07
Department of Physics and Astronomy, UTK, United States of America (USA) 0.07
Department of Physics, Yonsei University, South Korea 0.04
Center for Computational Studies of Advanced Electronic Material Properties (CCSAEMP), Yonsei University, South Korea 0.04
Center for Axion and Precision Physics Research, IBS, South Korea 0.04
Center for Quantum Nanoscience, IBS, South Korea 0.04
Department of Physics, Ewha, South Korea 0.04
Rutgers Center for Emergent Materials (RCEM), RU, United States of America (USA) 0.04
Department of Physics and Astronomy, RU, United States of America (USA) 0.04

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