"Spatially modulated susceptibility in thin film La2−xBaxCuO4"

Samantha I. Davis: Rahim R. Ullah, Carolina Adamo, Christopher A. Watson, John R. Kirtley, Malcolm R. Beasley, Steven A. Kivelson, and Kathryn A. Moler; Physical Review B, 07/11/18.

Additional Authors: Rahim R. Ullah, Carolina Adamo, Christopher A. Watson, John R. Kirtley, Malcolm R. Beasley, Steven A. Kivelson, and Kathryn A. Moler

Abstract:

The high critical temperature superconductor lanthanum barium copper oxide (La2−xBaxCuO4) exhibits a strong anomaly in critical temperature at 1/8th doping, nematicity, and other interesting properties. We report here scanning superconducting quantum interference device imaging of the magnetic fields and susceptibility in a number of thin film La2−xBaxCuO4samples with doping in the vicinity of the 1/8th anomaly. Spatially resolved measurements of the critical temperatures of these samples do not show a pronounced depression at 1/8th doping. They do, however, exhibit strong, nearly linear modulations of the susceptibility (“striae”) of multiple samples with surprisingly long periods of 1–4 μm. Counterintuitively, vortices trap in positions of largest diamagnetic susceptibility in these striae. Given the rich interplay of different orders in this material system and its known sensitivity to epitaxial strain, we propose phase separation as a possible origin of these features and discuss scenarios in which that might arise.