Physics of Nanoscale Superconducting Heterostructures

2 - 6 July 2007

Venue: Lorentz Center@Oort

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The objective of this Workshop is to bring together leading scientists actively working in different sub-fields of mesoscopic superconductivity in order to discuss recent advances in both theory and experiment and to promote new collaborations.

Scope of the Workshop

Rapidly progressing miniaturization of nanodevices brings about exciting novel physical phenomena and creates new challenges for their adequate interpretation within the quantum theory. One of the most fundamental concepts of quantum mechanics -quantum coherence - plays a crucial role in our understanding of numerous intriguing properties of nanostructures discovered over recent years. Quantum coherence of electrons is of particular importance in hybrid structures composed of a superconductor (S) and a normal metal (N) or a ferromagnet (F). In such structures Cooper pairs can penetrate into the latter, thereby significantly changing the properties of the system. As a result of this proximity effect the N- or F-metal also acquires superconducting properties, such as being able to carry supercurrent and, hence, exhibiting Josephson and Meissner effects as well as other superconducting properties.

Although the physics of this superconducting proximity effect is rather well understood in a variety of more conventional NS systems, recently a number of novel nanoscale superconducting structures was fabricated and new interesting experimental results were reported. As examples we mention recent observations of dc Josephson effect in single wall carbon nanotubes and in graphene monolayers placed in-between superconducting electrodes;  experimental studies of crossed Andreev reflection in NS an FS structures;  investigations of quantum phase slips in superconducting nanowires; and recently obtained experimental indications on unconventional pairing and long range proximity effect in FS structures. These recent experimental advances require adequate interpretation and motivate theoreticians to analyze yet unexplored regimes and situations. The workshop program will include talks of the leading experts, both theorists and experimentalists, on a number of the topics mentioned above.


    Andrei Zaikin, Inst. fur Nanotechnol. Forschungszentrum  

    Alexander Golubov, Fac. Science + Technol. Univ. of Twente  

    Jan Aarts, Kamerlingh Onnes Laboratory, Leiden Univ  

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