Superconducting group-IV semiconductors

Nat Mater. 2009 May;8(5):375-82. doi: 10.1038/nmat2425.


Despite the amount of experimental and theoretical work on doping-induced superconductivity in covalent semiconductors based on group IV elements over the past four years, many open questions and puzzling results remain to be clarified. The nature of the coupling (whether mediated by electronic correlation, phonons or both), the relationship between the doping concentration and the critical temperature (T(c)), which affects the prospects for higher transition temperatures, and the influence of disorder and dopant homogeneity are debated issues that will determine the future of the field. Here, we present recent achievements and predictions, with a focus on boron-doped diamond and silicon. We also suggest that innovative superconducting devices, combining specific properties of diamond or silicon with the maturity of semiconductor-based technologies, will soon be developed.