Zero-Point Quantum Fluctuations in Ultra-Thin Superconducting Films

H. M. Jaeger, D. B. Haviland, A. M. Goldman, B. G. Orr

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Investigations of the onset of superconductivity in ultra-thin films of Ga and Pb, deposited onto substrates held at low temperatures have been carried out. The measurements have revealed the existence of a threshold for superconductivity in which the normal-state sheet resistance is the only relevant parameter. It is found that only when the normal-state sheet resistance falls below h/4e2 does a film exhibit zero resistance at low temperatures. This value for the threshold is in agreement with recent theoretical models predicting a dissipation driven phase transition. At values greater than this threshold, but nevertheless close to it, a systematic and rapid variation of the low-temperature resistance with normal-state resistance is observed. We interpret this behavior as due to strong zero-point quantum fluctuations and speculate that it can be modelled as a 2-D XY transition in which dissipation rather than temperature is the control -parameter.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1305-1306
Number of pages2
JournalJapanese Journal of Applied Physics
Issue numberS3-2
StatePublished - Jan 1987


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