Theory of the critical current in two-band superconductors with application toMgB2 Academic Article uri icon

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abstract

  • Using a Green's function formulation of the superfluid current j_s, where a momentum q_s is applied to the Cooper pair, we have calculated j_s as a function of q_s, temperature, and impurity scattering for a two-band superconductor. We consider both renormalized BCS and full strong-coupling Eliashberg theory. There are two peaks in the current as a function of q_s due to the two energy scales for the gaps and this can give rise to non-standard behavior for the critical current. The critical current j_c, which is given as the maximum in j_s, can exhibit a kink as a function of temperature as the maximum is transferred from one peak to other. Other temperature variations are also possible and the universal BCS behavior is violated. The details depend on the material parameters of the system, such as the amount of coupling between the bands, the gap anisotropy, the Fermi velocities, and the density of states of each band. The Ginzburg-Landau relation between j_c, the penetration depth lambda_L and thermodynamic critical field H_c, is modified. Using Eliashberg theory with the electron-phonon spectral densities given from bandstructure calculations, we have applied our calculations for j_s and j_c to the case of MgB2 and find agreement with experiment.

publication date

  • July 1, 2005