HomePhysicsUncovering an Odd Type of Superconductivity

Uncovering an Odd Type of Superconductivity

• Physics 15, s165

An revolutionary approach will permit scientists to probe superconductivity involving an uncommon sort of electron pairing known as odd-frequency pairing.

D. Chakraborty and A. M. Black-Schaffer [1]

For greater than a century, physicists have contemplated the origin of superconductivity—the flexibility of sure supplies to conduct electrical energy with out resistance. Right now, standard superconductivity is pretty nicely understood, however different types of the phenomenon stay mysterious. Debmalya Chakraborty and Annica Black-Schaffer at Uppsala College, Sweden, have proposed an experimental probe for one sort of unconventional superconductivity [1]. The researchers hope that their approach will result in a a lot better understanding of the phenomenon.

The mechanism behind superconductivity is the formation of particle-like entities known as Cooper pairs—certain states of two electrons. Peculiar superconductivity entails even-frequency pairing, by which the Cooper pairs have a good symmetry with respect to time. Chakraborty and Black-Schaffer are involved with odd-frequency pairing, whereby the pairs have an odd symmetry in time. Odd-frequency pairing is believed to exist in lots of superconducting techniques—together with in constructions that mix superconductors with magnetic supplies—however till now, scientists have lacked a technique for straight detecting it.

The method proposed by Chakraborty and Black-Schaffer entails making use of scanning tunneling microscopy and spectroscopy to a superconductor after which operating the output by means of a mathematical course of known as a Fourier remodel. The end result accommodates quantum interference patterns brought on by the inevitable presence of impurities within the superconductor. Crucially, these patterns have distinct options that may reveal the existence or the absence of odd-frequency pairing. The researchers say that their methodology might be utilized to a variety of superconductors and used to check how odd-frequency pairing impacts key materials properties corresponding to the soundness of the superconducting state.

–Ryan Wilkinson

Ryan Wilkinson is a Corresponding Editor for Physics Journal primarily based in Durham, UK.


  1. D. Chakraborty and A. M. Black-Schaffer, “Quasiparticle interference as a direct experimental probe of bulk odd-frequency superconducting pairing,” Phys. Rev. Lett. 129, 247001 (2022).

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