Evolution of the electronic excitation spectrum with strongly diminishing hole density in superconducting Bi2Sr2CaCu2O8+delta

J. W. Alldredge, Jinho Lee, K. McElroy, M. Wang, K. Fujita, Y. Kohsaka, C. Taylor, H. Eisaki, S. Uchida, P. J. Hirschfeld, J. C. Davis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

114 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Coulomb interactions between the carriers may provide the mechanism for enhanced unconventional superconductivity in the copper oxides. However, they simultaneously cause inelastic quasiparticle scattering that can destroy it. Understanding the evolution of this balance with doping is crucial because it is responsible for the rapidly diminishing critical temperature as the hole density p is reduced towards the Mott insulating state. Here, we use tunnelling spectroscopy to measure the T ! 0 spectrum of electronic excitations N(E) over a wide range of hole density p in superconducting Bi2Sr2CaCu2O8+delta. We introduce a parameterization for N(E) based on a particle-hole symmetric anisotropic energy gap Delta( k) = Delta(1)(cos(k(x))-cos(k(y)))/2 plus an inelastic scattering rate that varies linearly with energy Gamma(2)(E)= alpha E. We demonstrate that this form of N(E) enables successful fitting of differential tunnelling conductance spectra throughout much of the Bi2Sr2CaCu2O8+delta phase diagram. We find that Delta(1) values rise with falling p along the familiar trajectory of excitations to the 'pseudogap' energy, whereas the energy-dependent inelastic scattering rate Gamma(2)( E)= alpha E seems to be an intrinsic property of the electronic structure and rises steeply for p < 16%. Such diverging inelastic scattering may play a key role in suppression of superconductivity in the copper oxides as the Mott insulating state is approached.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)319-326
Number of pages8
JournalNature Physics
Volume4
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2008

Keywords

  • HIGH-TEMPERATURE SUPERCONDUCTIVITY
  • T-C SUPERCONDUCTORS
  • ATOMIC-SCALE
  • STATES
  • SPECTROSCOPY
  • SCATTERING
  • ANISOTROPY
  • PSEUDOGAP
  • IMPURITY
  • PHYSICS

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Evolution of the electronic excitation spectrum with strongly diminishing hole density in superconducting Bi2Sr2CaCu2O8+delta'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this