Mimicking cuprates with low-valence layered nickelates.
Antia Botana, Dept. of Physics, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ
The physics behind high-temperature superconducting cuprates remains a defining problem in Condensed Matter Physics. One way of addressing this problem has been to search for alternative transition metal oxides with comparable structures and 3d electron count, proxies for cuprate physics. By means of electronic structure calculations, we propose low-valence layered nickelates as one of the closest analogs to cuprates yet reported. These materials possess a combination of traits that are widely considered as crucial ingredients for high-temperature superconductivity in cuprates: a square-planar nature, combined with the appropriate 3d-electron count, a large orbital polarization, and a high degree of hybridization with O-2p states. Our results show that planar nickelates offer a novel way of interrogating the cuprate phase diagram and are singularly promising candidates for unconventional superconductivity.
Host: Walter Lambrecht