A model of the cuprates: from the pseudogap metal to d-wave superconductivity and charge order

04/21/2023 10:00 am - 11:30 am
Hybrid- G10
Address: 20 Garden Street, Cambridge MA 02138

Quantum Matter Seminar

Speaker: Prof. Subir Sachdev (Harvard)

Title: A model of the cuprates: from the pseudogap metal to d-wave superconductivity and charge order

Abstract: Soon after the discovery of high-temperature superconductivity in the cuprates, Anderson proposed a connection to quantum spin liquids. But observations since then have shown that the low-temperature phase diagram is dominated by conventional states, with a competition between superconductivity and charge-ordered states which break translational symmetry. We employ the “pseudogap metal” phase, found at intermediate temperatures and low hole doping, as the parent to the phases found at lower temperatures. The pseudogap metal is described as a fractionalized phase of a single-band model, with small pocket Fermi surfaces of electron-like quasiparticles whose enclosed area is not equal to the free electron value, and an underlying pi-flux spin liquid with an emergent SU(2) gauge field. This pi-flux spin liquid is now known to be unstable to confinement at sufficiently low energies. We develop a theory of the different routes to confinement of the pi-flux spin liquid and show that d-wave superconductivity, antiferromagnetism, and charge order are natural outcomes. We argue that this theory provides routes to resolving a number of open puzzles on the cuprate phase diagram.
As a side result, at half-filling, we propose a deconfined quantum critical point between an antiferromagnet and a d-wave superconductor described by a conformal gauge theory of 2 flavors of massless Dirac fermions and 2 flavors of complex scalars coupled as fundamentals to a SU(2) gauge field.
This talk is based on Maine Christos, Zhu-Xi Luo, Henry Shackleton, Mathias S. Scheurer, and S. S., arXiv:2302.07885