Multiple superconducting phases in new heavy fermion superconductor PrOs4Sb12

Phys Rev Lett. 2003 Mar 21;90(11):117001. doi: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.90.117001. Epub 2003 Mar 17.


The superconducting gap structure of recently discovered heavy fermion superconductor PrOs4Sb12 was investigated by using thermal transport measurements in magnetic field rotated relative to the crystal axes. We demonstrate that a novel change in the symmetry of the superconducting gap function occurs deep inside the superconducting state, giving a clear indication of the presence of two distinct superconducting phases with twofold and fourfold symmetries. We infer that the gap functions in both phases have a point node singularity, in contrast to the familiar line node singularity observed in almost all unconventional superconductors.