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Competing symmetries and broken bonds in superconducting vortex-antivortex molecular crystals

Neal, J.S., Milosevic, M.V., Bending, S.J., Potenza, A., Emeterio, L.S. and Marrows, C.H. (2007) Competing symmetries and broken bonds in superconducting vortex-antivortex molecular crystals. Physical Review Letters, 99 (127001). ISSN 1079-7114

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Hall probe microscopy has been used to image vortex-antivortex molecules induced in superconducting Pb films by the stray fields from square arrays of magnetic dots. We have directly observed spontaneous vortex-antivortex pairs and studied how they interact with added free (anti)fluxons in an applied magnetic field. We observe a variety of phenomena arising from competing symmetries which either drive added antivortices to join antivortex shells around dots or stabilize the translationally symmetric antivortex lattice between the dots. Added vortices annihilate antivortex shells, leading first to a stable “nulling state” with no free fluxons and then, at high densities, to vortex shells around the dots stabilized by the asymmetric antipinning potential. Our experimental findings are in good agreement with Ginzburg-Landau calculations.

Item Type: Article
Copyright, Publisher and Additional Information: © 2007 American Physical Society. This is an author produced version of a paper published in Physical Review Letters. Uploaded in accordance with the publisher's self-archiving policy.
Institution: The University of Leeds
Academic Units: The University of Leeds > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences (Leeds) > School of Physics and Astronomy (Leeds)
Depositing User: Sherpa Assistant
Date Deposited: 03 Dec 2007 16:26
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2014 23:54
Published Version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevLett.99.127001
Status: Published
Publisher: American Physical Society
Refereed: Yes
Identification Number: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.99.127001
URI: http://eprints.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/3516

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