Vortex phase diagram and the normal state of cuprates with charge and spin orders

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Science Advances  14 Feb 2020:
Vol. 6, no. 7, eaay8946
DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aay8946


The phase diagram of underdoped cuprates in a magnetic field (H) is key to understanding the anomalous normal state of these high-temperature superconductors. However, the upper critical field (Hc2), the extent of superconducting (SC) phase with vortices, and the role of charge orders at high H remain controversial. Here we study stripe-ordered La-214, i.e., cuprates in which charge orders are most pronounced and zero-field SC transition temperatures Tc0 are lowest. This enables us to explore the vortex phases in a previously inaccessible energy scale window. By combining linear and nonlinear transport techniques sensitive to vortex matter, we determine the TH phase diagram, directly detect Hc2, and reveal novel properties of the high-field ground state. Our results demonstrate that quantum fluctuations and disorder play a key role as T0, while the high-field ground state is likely a metal, not an insulator, due to the presence of stripes.

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