Vortex molecules in thin films of layered superconductors
A.V. Samokhvalov1,2, A.S. Mel’nikov1,2, and A.I. Buzdin3,4
1Institute for Physics of Microstructures, Russian Academy of Sciences, Nizhny Novgorod, GSP-105, 603950, Russia
2N.I. Lobachevsky State University of Nizhny Novgorod, Nizhny Novgorod 603950, Russia
3University of Bordeaux, LOMA UMR-CNRS 5798, F-33405 Talence Cedex, France
4Department of Materials Science and Metallurgy, University of Cambridge, CB3 0FS, Cambridge, United Kingdom
Received December 27, 2017
The seminal work of A.A. Abrikosov on the vortex lattices in type-II superconductors has triggered the creation and rapid development of the whole new field of condensed matter physics, namely, the physics of vortex matter in a large variety of superfluid and superconducting systems. Among these systems and compounds the layered superconductors are known to form a very important class which is associated with a number of fascinating new discoveries in vortex physics. The phenomenon of the vortex attraction in tilted magnetic fields provides one of the examples of such findings which affected theoretical and experimental research in the field for almost two decades. In our paper we review some recent advances in this direction focusing on the intervortex interaction and equilibrium vortex structures in thin films of layered superconductors in magnetic field tilted with respect to the layers. In such a case the magnetic field penetrates superconductor in the form of tilted vortices or a crossing array of Josephson vortices and pancake stacks. We study the interplay between two different long-range potentials: (i) attraction of tilted vortices or deformed stacks; (ii) the Pearl's repulsion. This interplay is responsible for the formation of the minimum in the total interaction energy and resulting decay of vortex chains in clusters. The number of Abrikosov vortices in these clusters (or vortex molecules) depends on field tilting angle and film thickness.
PACS: 74.25.Hа Magnetic properties including vortex structures and related phenomena;
Key words: Abrikosov vortices, layered superconductors, vortex chains.
Published online: April 25, 2018