Peng Cai

Tsinghua University, Beijing, Beijing Shi, China

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Publications (7)46.98 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: We use scanning tunneling microscopy to investigate the doping dependence of quasiparticle interference (QPI) in NaFe1-xCoxAs iron-based superconductors. The goal is to study the relation between nematic fluctuations and Cooper pairing. In the parent and underdoped compounds, where fourfold rotational symmetry is broken macroscopically, the QPI patterns reveal strong rotational anisotropy. At optimal doping, however, the QPI patterns are always fourfold symmetric. We argue this implies small nematic susceptibility and, hence, insignificant nematic fluctuation in optimally doped iron pnictides. Since TC is the highest this suggests nematic fluctuation is not a prerequistite for strong Cooper pairing.
    Physical Review Letters 03/2014; 112(12):127001. · 7.73 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Although the origin of high temperature superconductivity in the iron pnictides is still under debate, it is widely believed that magnetic interactions or fluctuations have a crucial role in triggering Cooper pairing. A key issue regarding the iron pnictide phase diagram is whether long-range magnetic order can coexist with superconductivity microscopically. Here we use scanning tunnelling microscopy to investigate the local electronic structure of underdoped NaFe1-xCoxAs near the spin density wave and superconducting phase boundary. Spatially resolved spectroscopy directly reveals both the spin density wave and superconducting gaps at the same atomic location, providing compelling evidence for the microscopic coexistence of the two phases. The strengths of the two orders are shown to anti-correlate with each other, indicating the competition between them. This work implies that Cooper pairing in the iron pnictides can occur when portions of the Fermi surface are already gapped by the spin density wave order.
    Nature Communications 03/2013; 4:1596. · 10.02 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Although the mechanism of superconductivity in the cuprates remains elusive, it is generally agreed that at the heart of the problem is the physics of doped Mott insulators. A crucial step for solving the high temperature superconductivity puzzle is to elucidate the electronic structure of the parent compound and the behaviour of doped charge carriers. Here we use scanning tunnelling microscopy to investigate the atomic-scale electronic structure of the Ca(2)CuO(2)Cl(2) parent Mott insulator of the cuprates. The full electronic spectrum across the Mott-Hubbard gap is uncovered for the first time, which reveals the particle-hole symmetric and spatially uniform Hubbard bands. Defect-induced charge carriers are found to create broad in-gap electronic states that are strongly localized in space. We show that the electronic structure of pristine Mott insulator is consistent with the Zhang-Rice singlet model, but the peculiar features of the doped electronic states require further investigations.
    Nature Communications 01/2013; 4:1365. · 10.02 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We report the doping, temperature, and spatial evolutions of the electronic structure of NaFe(1-x)Co(x)As studied by scanning tunneling microscopy. In the parent state we directly observe the spin density wave gap, which exhibits unconventional features that are incompatible with simple Fermi surface nesting. The optimally doped sample has a single superconducting gap, but in the overdoped regime a novel pseudogaplike feature emerges. The pseudogaplike phase coexists with superconductivity in the ground state, persists well into the normal state, and shows strong spatial variations. The characteristics of the three distinct electronic states revealed here shed important new lights on the microscopic models for the iron-based superconductors.
    Physical Review Letters 07/2012; 109(3):037002. · 7.73 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We report scanning tunneling microscopy studies of the local structural and electronic properties of the iron selenide superconductor K0.73Fe1.67Se2 with TC = 32 K. On the atomically resolved FeSe surface, we observe a well-defined superconducting gap and the microscopic coexistence of a charge-density modulation with √2×√2 periodicity with respect to the original Se lattice. We propose that a possible origin of the pattern is the electronic superstructure caused by the block-antiferromagnetic ordering of the iron moments. The widely expected iron vacancy ordering is not observed, indicating that it is not a necessary ingredient for superconductivity in the intercalated iron selenides.
    Physical review. B, Condensed matter 03/2012; 85(9). · 3.77 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We report scanning tunneling microscopy studies of the local structural and electronic properties of the iron selenide superconductor K0.73Fe1.67Se2 with TC = 32K. On the atomically resolved FeSe surface, we observe well-defined superconducting gap and the microscopic coexistence of a charge density modulation with √2 x√2 periodicity with respect to the original Se lattice. We propose that a possible origin of the pattern is the electronic superstructure caused by the block antiferromagnetic ordering of the iron moments. The widely expected iron vacancy ordering is not observed, indicating that it is not a necessary ingredient for superconductivity in the intercalated iron selenides.
    02/2012;
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    ABSTRACT: We present scanning tunneling microscopy studies of the LaOFeAs parent compound of iron pnictide superconductors. High resolution spectroscopic imaging reveals strong standing wave patterns induced by quasiparticle interference of two-dimensional surface states. Fourier analysis shows that the distribution of scattering wave vectors exhibits pronounced twofold (C(2)) symmetry, strongly reminiscent of the nematic electronic state found in CaFe(1.94)Co(0.06)As(2). The implications of these results to the electronic structure of the pnictide parent states will be discussed.
    Physical Review Letters 02/2011; 106(8):087001. · 7.73 Impact Factor