Visualizing the morphology of vortex lattice domains in a bulk type-II superconductor.

Abstract:

:Alike materials in the solid state, the phase diagram of type-II superconductors exhibit crystalline, amorphous, liquid and spatially inhomogeneous phases. The multitude of different phases of vortex matter has thence proven to act as almost ideal model system for the study of both the underlying properties of superconductivity but also of general phenomena such as domain nucleation and morphology. Here we show how neutron grating interferometry yields detailed information on the vortex lattice and its domain structure in the intermediate mixed state of a type-II niobium superconductor. In particular, we identify the nucleation regions, how the intermediate mixed state expands, and where it finally evolves into the Shubnikov phase. Moreover, we complement the results obtained from neutron grating interferometry by small-angle neutron scattering that confirm the spatially resolved morphology found in the intermediate mixed state, and very small-angle neutron scattering that confirm the domain structure of the vortex lattice.

journal_name

Nat Commun

journal_title

Nature communications

authors

Reimann T,Mühlbauer S,Schulz M,Betz B,Kaestner A,Pipich V,Böni P,Grünzweig C

doi

10.1038/ncomms9813

subject

Has Abstract

pub_date

2015-11-02 00:00:00

pages

8813

issn

2041-1723

pii

ncomms9813

journal_volume

6

pub_type

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