Quantum Griffiths singularity of superconductor-metal transition in Ga thin films

Science. 2015 Oct 30;350(6260):542-5. doi: 10.1126/science.aaa7154. Epub 2015 Oct 15.


The Griffiths singularity in a phase transition, caused by disorder effects, was predicted more than 40 years ago. Its signature, the divergence of the dynamical critical exponent, is challenging to observe experimentally. We report the experimental observation of the quantum Griffiths singularity in a two-dimensional superconducting system. We measured the transport properties of atomically thin gallium films and found that the films undergo superconductor-metal transitions with increasing magnetic field. Approaching the zero-temperature quantum critical point, we observed divergence of the dynamical critical exponent, which is consistent with the Griffiths singularity behavior. We interpret the observed superconductor-metal quantum phase transition as the infinite-randomness critical point, where the properties of the system are controlled by rare large superconducting regions.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't