### Abstract

Original language | English |
---|---|

Pages (from-to) | 21-25 |

Number of pages | 5 |

Journal | Nature Physics |

Volume | 11 |

Issue number | 1 |

Early online date | 10 Nov 2014 |

DOIs | |

Publication status | Published - 1 Jan 2015 |

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### Keywords

- Critical superconductors
- Mesoscopic Superconductivity
- Hall magnetometry

### Cite this

*Nature Physics*,

*11*(1), 21-25. https://doi.org/10.1038/nphys3146

**Rayleigh instability of confined vortex droplets in critical superconductors.** / Lukyanchuk, Igor; Vinokur, Valerie; Rydh, Andreas; Xie, R; Milosevic, Milorad; Welp, Ulrich; Zach, M; Xiao, Z L; Crabtree, George; Bending, Simon; Peeters, Francois; Kwok, Wai-Kwong.

Research output: Contribution to journal › Article

*Nature Physics*, vol. 11, no. 1, pp. 21-25. https://doi.org/10.1038/nphys3146

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Rayleigh instability of confined vortex droplets in critical superconductors

AU - Lukyanchuk, Igor

AU - Vinokur, Valerie

AU - Rydh, Andreas

AU - Xie, R

AU - Milosevic, Milorad

AU - Welp, Ulrich

AU - Zach, M

AU - Xiao, Z L

AU - Crabtree, George

AU - Bending, Simon

AU - Peeters, Francois

AU - Kwok, Wai-Kwong

PY - 2015/1/1

Y1 - 2015/1/1

N2 - Depending on the Ginzburg–Landau parameter K, superconductors can either be fully diamagnetic if K<1/SQRT(2) (type I superconductors) or allow magnetic flux to penetrate through Abrikosov vortices if K>1/SQRT(2) (type II superconductors; refs 1,2). At the Bogomolny critical point, K=Kc=1/SQRT(2), a state that is infinitely degenerate with respect to vortex spatial configurations arises [3,4]. Despite in-depth investigations of conventional type I and type II superconductors, a thorough understanding of the magnetic behaviour in the near-Bogomolny critical regime at K~Kc remains lacking. Here we report that in confined systems the critical regime expands over a finite interval of K forming a critical superconducting state. We show that in this state, in a sample with dimensions comparable to the vortex core size, vortices merge into a multi-quanta droplet, which undergoes Rayleigh instability [5] on increasing and decays by emitting single vortices. Superconducting vortices realize Nielsen–Olesen singular solutions of the Abelian Higgs model, which is pervasive in phenomena ranging from quantum electrodynamics to cosmology [6–9]. Our study of the transient dynamics of Abrikosov–Nielsen–Olesen vortices in systems with boundaries promises access to non-trivial effects in quantum field theory by means of bench-top laboratory experiments.

AB - Depending on the Ginzburg–Landau parameter K, superconductors can either be fully diamagnetic if K<1/SQRT(2) (type I superconductors) or allow magnetic flux to penetrate through Abrikosov vortices if K>1/SQRT(2) (type II superconductors; refs 1,2). At the Bogomolny critical point, K=Kc=1/SQRT(2), a state that is infinitely degenerate with respect to vortex spatial configurations arises [3,4]. Despite in-depth investigations of conventional type I and type II superconductors, a thorough understanding of the magnetic behaviour in the near-Bogomolny critical regime at K~Kc remains lacking. Here we report that in confined systems the critical regime expands over a finite interval of K forming a critical superconducting state. We show that in this state, in a sample with dimensions comparable to the vortex core size, vortices merge into a multi-quanta droplet, which undergoes Rayleigh instability [5] on increasing and decays by emitting single vortices. Superconducting vortices realize Nielsen–Olesen singular solutions of the Abelian Higgs model, which is pervasive in phenomena ranging from quantum electrodynamics to cosmology [6–9]. Our study of the transient dynamics of Abrikosov–Nielsen–Olesen vortices in systems with boundaries promises access to non-trivial effects in quantum field theory by means of bench-top laboratory experiments.

KW - Critical superconductors

KW - Mesoscopic Superconductivity

KW - Hall magnetometry

U2 - 10.1038/nphys3146

DO - 10.1038/nphys3146

M3 - Article

VL - 11

SP - 21

EP - 25

JO - Nature Physics

JF - Nature Physics

SN - 1745-2473

IS - 1

ER -