Dynamic scaling and two-dimensional high-Tc superconductors

D. R. Strachan, C. J. Lobb, R. S. Newrock

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


There has been ongoing debate over the critical behavior of two-dimensional superconductors; in particular for high Tc superconductors. The conventional view is that a Kosterlitz-Thouless-Berezinskii transition occurs as long as finite size effects do not obscure the transition. However, there have been recent suggestions that a different transition actually occurs which incorporates aspects of both the dynamic scaling theory of Fisher, Fisher, and Huse and the Kosterlitz-Thouless-Berezinskii transition. of general interest is that this modified transition apparently has a universal dynamic critical exponent. Some have countered that this apparent universal behavior is rooted in a newly proposed finite-size scaling theory; one that also incorporates scaling and conventional two-dimensional theory. To investigate these issues we study dc voltage versus current data of a 12-Å-thick YBa2Cu3O7−δ film. We find that the newly proposed scaling theories have intrinsic flexibility that is relevant to the analysis of the experiments. In particular, the data scale according to the modified transition for arbitrarily defined critical temperatures between 0 and 19.5 K, and the temperature range of a successful scaling collapse is related directly to the sensitivity of the measurement. This implies that the apparent universal exponent is due to the intrinsic flexibility rather than some real physical property. To address this intrinsic flexibility, we propose a criterion which would give conclusive evidence for phase transitions in two-dimensional superconductors. We conclude by reviewing results to see if our criterion is satisfied.

Original languageEnglish
JournalPhysical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics
Issue number17
StatePublished - May 22 2003

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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