High temperature interfacial superconductivity
High temperature interfacial superconductivity High-temperature superconductivity confined to nanometer-scale interfaces has been a long standing goal because of potential applications in electronic devices. The spontaneous formation of a superconducting interface in bilayers consisting of an insulator (La.sub.2CuO.sub.4) and a metal (La.sub.1-xSr.sub.xCuO.sub.4), neither of which is superconducting per se, is described. Depending upon the layering sequence of the bilayers, T.sub.c may be either .about.15 K or .about.30 K. This highly robust phenomenon is confined to within 2-3 nm around the interface. After exposing the bilayer to ozone, T.sub.c exceeds 50 K and this enhanced superconductivity is also shown to originate from a 1 to 2 unit cell thick interfacial layer. The results demonstrate that engineering artificial heterostructures provides a novel, unconventional way to fabricate stable, quasi two-dimensional high T.sub.c phases and to significantly enhance superconducting properties in other superconductors. The superconducting interface may be implemented, for example, in SIS tunnel junctions or a SuFET.
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