Tunable localization in an s-electron Kondo system at room temperature

J. L. M. van Mechelen, M. J. van Setten

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To achieve room-temperature superconductivity, a mechanism is needed that provides heavy quasiparticles at room temperature. In heavy fermion systems such localization is prototypically present only at liquid helium temperatures. In these $f$-electron Kondo systems, conduction electrons magnetically couple to localized moments, enhancing their mass and scatting time. These quasiparticles may form Cooper pairs and cause unconventional superconductivity with a critical temperature $T_c$ of the order of the Fermi energy $\varepsilon_F$. In relative terms, this $T_c$ is much larger than in cuprate or BCS superconductors for which $T_c\ll \varepsilon_F$. This suggests that Kondo systems in general have the potential to be high-temperature superconductors. For this to occur, strong correlations that cause electron localization need to take place at much larger temperatures. Here we show that metal hydrides manifest strong electron correlations in a single $3d_{x^2-y^2}$ band at the Fermi level, similar to the cuprates but at room temperature. Hole doping of this band, by varying the hydrogen content, causes divergence of the carrier mass and suggests the approach of an ordered Mott transition with signatures of a correlated metallic Kondo lattice. These room-temperature phenomena are expected to be widespread across hydrogen-rich compounds, and offer a promising novel ground to encounter unconventional superconductivity in the class of the metallic hydrides.
Originele taal-2Engels
TijdschriftarXiv
StatusGepubliceerd - 8 feb 2019
Extern gepubliceerdJa

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Trefwoorden

  • cond-mat.str-el
  • cond-mat.mtrl-sci
  • cond-mat.supr-con

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