RESEARCH TOPICS

Superconductivity

The high temperature superconductors which were discovered in 1986 still continue to pose major challenges to scientists. Not only is the mechanism for superconductivity not known, but the nature of the superconducting state and the motion of vortices continue to be debated intensely. We study the microwave response of superconductors, both for understanding the nature of superconductivity, the dynamics of vortices and for practical applications in microwave devices.

The principal areas of our research are:

  • Fundamental measurements and analysis of the penetration depth and surface impedance of superconductors, with a view to understanding the pairing state, the quasiparticle spectrum and the gap parameter
  • Vortex dynamics at high (rf and microwave) frequencies to obtain quantiative measurements of parameters such as pinning force constants, vortex viscosity, critical fields, melting and vortex glass transitions
  • Flux penetration and critical state dynamics
  • Josephson type nonlinear phenomena at microwave frequencies
  • Development of novel measurement techniques, such as the "hot finger" cavity method to measure surface impedance, tunnel diode technique of measuring penetration depth, patterned film structures to study vortex dynamics, modulated microwave absorption

The materials we study are the cuprate High Tc superconductors, borocarbides, and organic superconductors.

Our work in Superconductivity is supported by:

  • National Science Foundation
  • Division of Materials Research and Division of Electrical and Communications Systems, Rome Laboratory, Hanscom AFB (an AFOSR lab)

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