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Regular version of the site

Article

Quasi-one-dimensional vortex matter in superconducting nanowires

Wilmer Y. Cordoba-Camacho, da Silva R. M., Vagov A., A. A. Shanenko, Aguiar A. J.

It is well known that superconducting films made of a type-I material can demonstrate a type-II magnetic response, developing stable vortex configurations in a perpendicular magnetic field. Here we show that the superconducting state of a type-I nanowire undergoes more complex transformations, depending on the nanowire thickness. Sufficiently thin nanowires deviate from type I and develop multiquantum vortices and vortex clusters similar to intertype (IT) vortex states in bulk superconductors between conventional superconductivity types I and II. When the nanowire thickness decreases further, the quasi-one-dimensional vortex matter evolves towards type II so that the IT vortex configurations gradually disappear in favor of the standard Abrikosov lattice (chain) of single-quantum vortices. However, type II is not reached. Instead, an ultrathin nanowire re-enters abruptly the type-I regime while vortices tend to be suppressed by the boundaries, eventually becoming one-dimensional phase-slip centers. Our results demonstrate that arrays of nanowires can be used to construct composite superconducting materials with a widely tunable magnetic response.