SPIE Optical Science, Engineering, and Instrumentation 1998
Conference paper

Changes of Tc under epitaxial strain: Implications for the mechanism of superconductivity

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Recent results showed that a relationship exists between a large modulation of the critical temperature and small variations in the lattice parameters for strontium-doped La2CuO4 `214' thin films grown by molecular beam epitaxy under compressive or tensile strain. In this paper we search for the subtle deviation of the atom positions responsible for the observed behavior. We compare our findings regarding charge transfer, anisotropy, in-plane resistivity, and superfluid density with trends observed among the family of the one-CuO2-layer compounds. This systematics leads us to the following conclusions: (i) increasing the distance between the charge reservoir and the CuO2 plane is essential to increase Tc, (ii) the electrical coupling from one CuO2 plane to the next CuO2 plane may not be essential for the mechanism, (iii) a sufficient density of carriers is present in the underdoped state but the appearance of superconductivity is hindered by a large scattering rate, and (iv) this scattering rate is determined by the two-dimensional confinement of the carriers in the CuO2 planes.