Among the various theoretical mechanisms proposed to reach a higher Tc, the interface mechanism in different forms has been the one most explored, and it provides continual inspiration and hope for realizing the ultimate goal for researchers in the superconductivity field—room-temperature superconductivity. Difficulties do exist, as most of the materials proposed to exhibit the interfacial mechanism are artificially formed heterostructures and are by nature delicate and easily disturbed by strain and change in the stoichiometry at the interface. The discoveries of superconductivity in naturally assembled single crystals of rare earth (R)-doped CaFe2As2 (Ca122) with a Tc up to 49 K and undoped CaFe2As2 with a Tc up to 25 K have opened an alternate route to tackle the problem. The experimental observation has provided the most direct evidence for interface-induced superconductivity in Ca122 to date and possibly in R-doped Ca122. Given the fact that neither chemical doping nor the application of physical pressure has ever induced a Tc higher than 40 K in bulk FeSe, the reports of Tc up to 45–109 K in FeSe/STO thin films demonstrate that FeSe/STO is an ideal system in which to explore interface-enhanced superconductivity. Here we review the above three specific examples of our effort toward superconductors of higher Tc to demonstrate that the interface mechanism may be a promising paradigm to achieve higher Tc.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
- Condensed Matter Physics