A Superconducting Field-Effect Switch

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Science  28 Apr 2000:
Vol. 288, Issue 5466, pp. 656-658
DOI: 10.1126/science.288.5466.656

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We report here on a novel realization of a field-effect device that allows switching between insulating and superconducting states, which is the widest possible variation of electrical properties of a material. We chose C60 as the active material because of its low surface state density and observed superconductivity in alkali metal–doped C60. We induced three electrons per C60 molecule in the topmost molecular layer of a crystal with the field-effect device, creating a superconducting switch operating up to 11 kelvin. An insulator was thereby transformed into a superconductor. This technique offers new opportunities for the study of superconductivity as a function of carrier concentration.

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