Electronic evidence of an insulator-superconductor crossover in single-layer FeSe/SrTiO3 films.

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Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, ISSN: 1091-6490, Vol: 111, Issue: 52, Page: 18501-6

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10.1073/pnas.1414094112; 10. 1073/pnas.1414094112
He, Junfeng; Liu, Xu; Zhang, Wenhao; Zhao, Lin; Liu, Defa; He, Shaolong; Mou, Daixiang; Li, Fangsen; Tang, Chenjia; Li, Zhi; Wang, Lili; Peng, Yingying; Liu, Yan; Chen, Chaoyu; Yu, Li; Liu, Guodong; Dong, Xiaoli; Zhang, Jun; Chen, Chuangtian; Xu, Zuyan; Chen, Xi; Ma, Xu-Cun; Xue, Qikun; Zhou, X J Show More Hide
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Multidisciplinary; evidence; insulator-superconductor; electronic; single-layer; fese/srtio3; crossover; films; Engineering; Physical Sciences and Mathematics
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article description
In high-temperature cuprate superconductors, it is now generally agreed that superconductivity is realized by doping an antiferromagnetic Mott (charge transfer) insulator. The doping-induced insulator-to-superconductor transition has been widely observed in cuprates, which provides important information for understanding the superconductivity mechanism. In the iron-based superconductors, however, the parent compound is mostly antiferromagnetic bad metal, raising a debate on whether an appropriate starting point should go with an itinerant picture or a localized picture. No evidence of doping-induced insulator-superconductor transition (or crossover) has been reported in the iron-based compounds so far. Here, we report an electronic evidence of an insulator-superconductor crossover observed in the single-layer FeSe film grown on a SrTiO3 substrate. By taking angle-resolved photoemission measurements on the electronic structure and energy gap, we have identified a clear evolution of an insulator to a superconductor with increasing carrier concentration. In particular, the insulator-superconductor crossover in FeSe/SrTiO3 film exhibits similar behaviors to that observed in the cuprate superconductors. Our results suggest that the observed insulator-superconductor crossover may be associated with the two-dimensionality that enhances electron localization or correlation. The reduced dimensionality and the interfacial effect provide a new pathway in searching for new phenomena and novel superconductors with a high transition temperature.