Volume 80, Number 1, October 2007
Article Number 17006
Number of page(s) 6
Section Condensed Matter: Electronic Structure, Electrical, Magnetic and Optical Properties
Published online 11 September 2007
EPL, 80 (2007) 17006
DOI: 10.1209/0295-5075/80/17006

Diode effects in the surface superconductivity regime

J. Van de Vondel1, C. C. de Souza Silva2 and V. V. Moshchalkov1

1  INPAC-Institute for Nanoscale Physics and Chemistry, K.U. Leuven - Celestijnenlaan 200D, B-3001 Leuven, Belgium
2  Departamento de Fisica, Universidade Federal de Pernambuco - Cidade Universitaria, 50670-901 Recife-PE, Brazil

received 3 May 2007; accepted in final form 13 August 2007; published October 2007
published online 11 September 2007

In this letter we demonstrate that large periodic arrays of asymmetric antidots perforated in a superconducting Al film rectify very efficiently an ac drive into a collective unidirectional synchronous motion of millions of vortices. Moreover, the rectification process has two distinctly different regimes: delocalized high-temperature regime with collective inter-antidot guided vortex motion and localized low-temperature regime with the intra-antidot rectification controlled by the fluxoid quantization condition satisfied synchronously at the edge of each antidot. As a result, a single condensed-matter device can be used to produce a tunable reversible macroscopic quantum diode effect important for the realization of the guided motion of large vortex ensembles for fluxonics applications.

74.78.Na - Mesoscopic and nanoscale systems.
85.25.-j - Superconducting devices.
74.40.+k - Fluctuations (noise, chaos, nonequilibrium superconductivity, localization, etc.).

© Europhysics Letters Association 2007