Volume 83, Number 4, August 2008
Article Number 47012
Number of page(s) 6
Section Condensed Matter: Electronic Structure, Electrical, Magnetic and Optical Properties
Published online 19 August 2008
EPL, 83 (2008) 47012
DOI: 10.1209/0295-5075/83/47012

Quantum charge diffusion in underdamped Josephson junctions and superconducting nanowires

A. Zazunov, N. Didier and F. W. J. Hekking

Université Joseph Fourier, Laboratoire de Physique et de Modélisation des Milieux Condensés, CNRS BP 166, 38042 Grenoble, France, EU

received 11 March 2008; accepted in final form 8 July 2008; published August 2008
published online 19 August 2008

The effect of quantum fluctuations on the current-voltage characteristics of Josephson junctions and superconducting nanowires is studied in the underdamped limit. Quantum fluctuations induce transitions between a Coulomb blockade and a supercurrent branch, and can significantly modify the shape of current-voltage characteristics in the case of a highly resistive environment. Owing to the phase-charge duality, our results can be directly extended to the opposite overdamped limit.

74.78.Na - Mesoscopic and nanoscale systems.
74.50.+r - Tunneling phenomena; point contacts, weak links, Josephson effects.
73.23.Hk - Coulomb blockade; single-electron tunneling.

© EPLA 2008