'The discovery in 1996 of superconductivity at 0.2K near a magnetic quantum phase transition in CeIn3 opened a new dynasty of superconducting heavy electron materials, with many peculiar parallels to cuprate superconductors. In 2000, the introduction of additional layers of XIn_2, led to the discovery of the so-called ''115'' superconductors, with a tenfold increase in Tc[1]. By 2002, the replacement of Ce by Pu, drove the Tc up by an additional order of magnitude to 18.5K[2]. The recent discovery of a second material in this family has further deepened the mystery. In this talk I'll discuss the two newest ''high temperature'' heavy fermion superconductors in this series: PuCoGa5 and NpPd_2Al_5. These materials radically challenge the way we think about strongly correlated superconductivity. The way these materials directly transition from Curie paramagnets into anisotropic superconductors suggests a central role of spin as a driver for heavy electron superconductors - not just as the pairing glue - but as the basic fabric of the condensate. Motivated by these new materials, I'll discuss a model for superconductivity in the highest temperature superconductors in which the superconducting condensate involves formation of composite pairs between spins and conduction electrons[3]. Using this idea, we'll discuss how the physics of superconductivity and the Kondo effect can be combined, giving rise to a composite pairing model for the new superconductors. [1]}H. Hegger, C. Petrovic, E. G. Moshopoulou, M. F. Hundley, J. L. Sarrao, Z. Fisk, and J. D. Thompson, ''Pressure-Induced Superconductivity in Quasi-2D $CeRhIn_{5}$'' Phys. Rev. Lett. 84, 4986-4989 (2000). [2]J. L. Sarrao et al. , ``Plutonium-based superconductivity with a transition temperature above 18 K'', Nature (London) {bf 420}, 297-299 (2002). [3] Rebecca Flint, M. Dzero, P. Coleman, ''Heavy electrons and the symplectic symmetry of spin.'', Nature Physics 4, 643 - 648 (2008).Nature Physics, '


Talk Number PIRSA:09040021
Speaker Profile Piers Coleman