Superconducting instability of a non-centrosymmetric system

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Abstract

The Fermi gas approach to the weak-coupling superconductivity in the non-centrosymmetric systems lead to a conclusion of an approximately spin-orbit coupling independent critical temperature of the singlet states as well as the triplet states defined by the order parameter aligned with the antisymmetric spin-orbit coupling vector. We indicate that the above results follow from a simplified approximation of a density of states by a constant Fermi surface value. Such a scenario does not properly account for the spin-split quasiparticle energy spectrum and reduces the spin-orbit coupling influence on superconductivity to the bare pair-breaking effect of a lifted spin degeneracy. Applying the tight-binding model, which captures the primary features of the spin-split energy band, i.e., its enhanced width and the spin-orbit coupling induced redistribution of the spectral weights in the density of states, we calculate the critical temperature of a non-centrosymmetric superconductor. We report a general tendency of the critical temperature to be suppressed by the antisymmetric spin-orbit coupling. We indicate that, the monotonic decrease of the critical temperature may be altered by the spin-orbit coupling induced van Hove singularities which, when driven to the Fermi level, generate maxima in the phase diagram. Extending our considerations to the intermediate-coupling superconductivity we point out that the spin-orbit coupling induced change of the critical temperature depends on the structure of the electronic energy band and both – the strength and symmetry of the pair potential. Finally, we discuss the mixed singlet-triplet state superconducting instability and establish conditions concerning the symmetry of the singlet and triplet counterparts as well as the range of the spin-orbit coupling energy which make such a phase transition possible.

Keywords

Solid State and Materials 

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Open Access This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Quantum TechnologiesFaculty of Fundamental Problems of Technology, Wrocław University of Science and TechnologyWrocławPoland

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