Pseudogap state from quantum criticality
Univ. Bochum et Chaire B. Pascal à l'IPhT
Mon, Feb. 25th 2013, 14:00
Salle Claude Itzykson, Bât. 774, Orme des Merisiers
Upon application of an external tuning parameter, a magnetic state can be driven to a normal metal state at zero temperature. This phenomenon is known as quantum criticality and leads to fascinating responses in thermodynamics and transport of the compound. In the standard picture, a single quantum critical point occurs at zero temperature, which results in a nontrivial critical behavior in its vicinity. Here we show that in two dimensions the scenario is considerably more complex due to the enormous amount of quantum fluctuations. Instead of the single point separating the antiferromagnet from the normal metal, we have discovered a broad region between these two phases where the magnetic order is destroyed but certain areas of the Fermi surface are closed by a large gap. This gap reflects the formation of a novel quantum state characterized by a superposition of d-wave superconductivity and a quadrupole-density wave, id est a state in which an electron quadrupole density spatially oscillates with a period drastically different from the one of the original spin-density wave. At moderate temperatures both orders co-exist at short distances but thermal fluctuations destroy the long-range order. Below a critical temperature the fluctuations are less essential and superconductivity becomes stable. This new phenomenon may shed some light on the origin of the mysterious pseudogap state and of the high-temperature transition into the superconducting state in cuprates.