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Intrinsic paramagnetic meissner effect due to s-wave odd-frequency superconductivity

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Di Bernardo, Angelo  ORCID logo
Salman, Z 
Wang, XL 
Amado, M 
Egilmez, M 


In 1933, Meissner and Ochsenfeld reported the expulsion of magnetic flux, the diamagnetic Meissner effect, from the interior of superconducting lead. This discovery was crucial in formulating the Bardeen-Cooper-Schrieffer (BCS) theory of superconductivity. In exotic superconducting systems BCS theory does not strictly apply. A classical example is a superconductor-magnet hybrid system where magnetic ordering breaks time-reversal symmetry of the superconducting condensate and results in the stabilisation of an odd-frequency superconducting state. It has been predicted that under appropriate conditions, odd-frequency superconductivity should manifest in the Meissner state as fluctuations in the sign of the magnetic susceptibility meaning that the superconductivity can either repel (diamagnetic) or attract (paramagnetic) external magnetic flux. Here we report local probe measurements of faint magnetic fields in a Au/Ho/Nb trilayer system using low energy muons, where antiferromagnetic Ho (4.5 nm) breaks time-reversal symmetry of the proximity induced pair correlations in Au. From depth-resolved measurements below the superconducting transition of Nb we observe a local enhancement of the magnetic field in Au that exceeds the externally applied field, thus proving the existence of an intrinsic paramagnetic Meissner effect arising from an odd-frequency superconducting state.



cond-mat.supr-con, cond-mat.supr-con

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Physical Review X

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American Physical Society (APS)
Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EP/G037221/1)
J.W.A.R. acknowledges financial support from the Royal Society through a University Research Fellowship. J.W.A.R. and A.D.B. acknowledge financial support from the UK EPSRC through NanoDTC EP/G037221/1 and the Leverhulme Trust through an International Network Grant (IN-2013-033). A.D.B. also acknowledges additional financial support from the Schiff Foundation. X.L.W. and J.H.Z. acknowledge support from the MOST of China (2015CB921500). J.L. acknowledges support from the Outstanding Academic Fellows programme at NTNU, the Norwegian Research Council Grant (205591, FRINAT, 216700). J. L., J.W.A.R, and A.D.B. finally acknowledge support from the COST Action MP-1201 'Novel Functionalities through Optimized Confinement of Condensate and Fields.' S.L. and M.G.F. acknowledge the support of the EPSRC through Grant No. EP/J01060X. The muSR measurements were performed at the Swiss Muon Source (SµS), at the Paul Scherrer Institute in Villigen, Switzerland. The project has also received funding from the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration under the NMI3-II Grant number 283883.