Oscillating Rows of Vortices in Superconductors

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Science  07 Dec 2001:
Vol. 294, Issue 5549, pp. 2136-2138
DOI: 10.1126/science.1065968

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Superconductors can be used as dissipation-free electrical conductors as long as vortices are pinned. Vortices in high-temperature superconductors, however, behave anomalously, reflecting the anisotropic layered structure, and can move readily, thus preventing their practical use. Specifically, in a magnetic field tilted toward the layer plane, a special vortex arrangement (chain-lattice state) is formed. Real-time observation of vortices using high-resolution Lorentz microscopy revealed that the images of chain vortices begin to disappear at a much lower temperature, T d, than the superconducting transition temperature, T c. We attribute this image disappearance to the longitudinal oscillation of vortices along the chains.

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