Vortex dynamics controlled by local superconducting enhancement

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A controlled local enhancement of superconductivity yields unexpected modifications in the vortex dynamics. This local enhancement has been achieved by designing an array of superconducting Nb nanostructures embedded in a V superconducting film. The most remarkable findings are: (i) vanishing of the main commensurability effect between the vortex lattice and the array unit cell, (ii) hysteretic behavior in the vortex dynamics, (iii) broadening of the vortex liquid phase and (iv) strong softening of the vortex lattice. These effects can be controlled and they can be quenched by reducing the Nb array superconducting performance applying an in-plane magnetic field. These results can be explained by taking into account the repulsive potential landscape created by the superconducting Nb nanostructures on which vortices move.
©2019 The Author(s). Published by IOP Publishing Ltd We want to thank I K Schuller and V Bekeris for illuminating discussions, M Buchacek for useful suggestions and J Romero (CAI Tecnicas Fisicas, UCM) for his help with the SQUID measurements. The work has been supported by Spanish MICINN grants FIS2016-76058 (AEI/FEDER, UE), EU COST- CA16218. IMDEA Nanociencia acknowledges support from the 'Severo Ochoa' Programme for Centres of Excellence in R&D (MICINN, Grant SEV-2016-0686). AG acknowledges financial support from Spanish MICINN Grant ESP2017-86582-C4-1-R and IJCI-2017-33991; AMN acknowledges financial support from Spanish CAM Grant 2018-T1/IND-10360. JdV thanks Fundacion Ramon Areces for a postdoctoral fellowship.