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Creating better superconductors by periodic nanopatterning

by Milan P. Allan, Mark H. Fischer, Oliver Ostojic, Arjo Andringa

Submission summary

As Contributors: Milan Allan · Mark H Fischer
Arxiv Link: (pdf)
Date accepted: 2017-07-03
Date submitted: 2017-04-25 02:00
Submitted by: Allan, Milan
Submitted to: SciPost Physics
Academic field: Physics
  • Condensed Matter Physics - Experiment
  • Condensed Matter Physics - Theory
Approach: Theoretical


The quest to create superconductors with higher transition temperatures is as old as superconductivity itself. One strategy, popular after the realization that (conventional) superconductivity is mediated by phonons, is to chemically combine different elements within the crystalline unit cell to maximize the electron-phonon coupling. This led to the discovery of NbTi and Nb3Sn, to name just the most technologically relevant examples. Here, we propose a radically different approach to transform a `pristine' material into a better (meta-) superconductor by making use of modern fabrication techniques: designing and engineering the electronic properties of thin films via periodic patterning on the nanoscale. We present a model calculation to explore the key effects of different supercells that could be fabricated using nanofabrication or deliberate lattice mismatch, and demonstrate that specific pattern will enhance the coupling and the transition temperature. We also discuss how numerical methods could predict the correct design parameters to improve superconductivity in materials including Al, NbTi, and MgB2

Ontology / Topics

See full Ontology or Topics database.

Aluminium (Al) Electron-phonon coupling Magnesium diboride (MgB2) Nanofabrication Niobium-Tin (Nb3Sn) Niobium-Titanium (NbTi) Superconductivity/superconductors Thin films

Published as SciPost Phys. 3, 010 (2017)

Submission & Refereeing History

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Submission 1704.06805v1 on 25 April 2017

Reports on this Submission

Anonymous Report 1 on 2017-5-14 (Invited Report)

  • Cite as: Anonymous, Report on arXiv:1704.06805v1, delivered 2017-05-14, doi: 10.21468/SciPost.Report.138


new method to make better SC is proposed


just only method is proposed and no experimental evidence is given


In manuscript "Creating better superconductors by periodic nanopatterning",
the authors propose a new method to transform conventional 'pristine' superconductor to
better meta-superconductors with supercell periodicities of less or equal to 5 to 50 lattice
constant by modern nanofabrication. They show for the transformed meta-superconductor
how the photon-electron coupling parameter can be larger than one for 'pristine'
superconductors using BCS theory. Thus, the transformed meta-superconductor can have
higher critical temperature.

The manuscript is written clearly with in-depth discussion presented and all theoretical
calculations seems to be valid. I am convinced that this paper contains
rather definitive and quite reliable results on the subject. I recommend that
this manuscript should be published in SciPost Physics.

Requested changes

no changes

  • validity: high
  • significance: good
  • originality: high
  • clarity: top
  • formatting: excellent
  • grammar: excellent

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