Anlage Research Group

High Frequency Superconductivity, Microscopy, Nanophysics, and Chaos


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Laser Scanning Microscopy

Laser Scanning Microscopy (LSM) is a powerful tool for non-destructive testing of planar microelectronics chips containing superconducting, semiconducting and normal-metal elements. The micron-range resolution of the LSM matches the scale of point and extended defects, and high-temperature Superconducting (HTS) material grains. These grains are responsible for the spread of superconducting properties (critical temperature Tc, superconducting transition width dTc, critical current density Jc) and for the topology of dc and rf electric transport. Secondly, the large field of view provided by the LSM (up to tens of millimeters) is comparable to typical sizes of experimental HTS structures and HTS microchips. Last, the LSM presently seems to be the only technique which gives the option of simultaneous imaging and local manipulation of the superconducting properties of HTSs in a controllable way. We have shown earlier that the use of the LSM allows confident search and identification of microscopic defects, individual grain boundaries, spatial irregularities of HTS superconducting properties, and resistive regions of Ohmic dissipation.

In contrast with common light microscopy, the LSM method utilizes point-by-point raster scanning of the surface of a sample-under-test by employing a sharply focused laser beam as the optical probe. The interaction between the light and the superconductor results in local heating of the superconductor by the absorbed laser power, creating a non-equilibrium perturbation in its electronic system, and change in the intensity and polarization of the reflected beam. These changes are the source of the LSM photoresponse PR(x,y) that is detected as a function of the probe position (x,y) within the sample area. The photoresponse is transformed then into the local LSM contrast voltage V(x,y) to put it into computer for building a 2-D image of the optical, electronic, rf and other properties of the superconductor. The laser power is chosen low enough to consider the perturbation small within the framework of the specific task. The probe intensity is modulated in amplitude with the frequency fM= wM/2p and lock-in detected to enhance the signal-to-noise ratio and hence the contrast. The lock-in detection of the ac component dVAC=0.5 dV(x,y, wM) sin ( wMt + k) at the frequency fM is used (t is time and k is phase shift of the excitation wave).

LSM images of superconducting corner

Fig. 1 2D LSM images of (a) inductive and (b) resistive components of LSM PR in the center of a co-planar waveguide HTS microwave device, extracted by using the new procedures described in reference 115, below. The images on the right show the evolution of photoesponse at the inside corner of a superconducting meta-molecule as a function of increasing microwave power. A switching event eventually causes this meta-molecule to change its transmission properties.

Our collaborators in Karlsruhe Germany have a web site describing work done with the scanning laser microscope there.

An NSF-funded project entitled "A Novel Gap Spectroscopy Tool and Discovery of New Nodal Superconductors" is using the LSM to explore new ways to detect nodal directions in the low-energy excitation spectrum of exotic superconductors.  This work is based on the methods described in publication 161, below.

This work is done in collaboration with Dr. Alexander Zhuravel of the Verkin Institute of Low Temperature Physics in Kharkov, Ukraine, and Prof. Alexey Ustinov of the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Germany. This work is supported by the National Science Foundation under grant number 1410712, the Department of Energy, and the Office of Naval Research.

Papers: (All papers can be downloaded from the full publication list)

88. A. P. Zhuravel, A. V. Ustinov, K. S. Harshavardhan, and Steven M. Anlage "Influence of LaAlO3," Surface Topography on RF Current Distribution in Superconducting Microwave Devices," Appl. Phys. Lett. 81, 4979-4981 (2002). pdf

92. A. P. Zhuravel, A. V. Ustinov, D. Abraimov, and Steven M. Anlage, "Imaging Local Sources of Intermodulation in Superconducting Microwave Devices," IEEE Trans. Applied Supercond. 13, 340-343 (2003). pdf

96. A. P. Zhuravel, A. V. Ustinov, K. S. Harshavardhan, S. K. Remillard and Steven M. Anlage, “ Microscopic Imaging of RF Current Distribution and Intermodulation Sources in Superconducting Microwave Devices ,” Mat. Res. Soc. Symp. Proc. Vol. EXS-3, EE9.7.1-EE9.7.3 (2004). pdf

97. Alexander P. Zhuravel, Stephen Remillard , Steven M. Anlage, Alexey V. Ustinov, “ Spatially Resolved Analyses of Microwave and Intermodulation Current Flow Across HTS Resonator Using Low Temperature Laser Scanning Microscopy ,” The Fifth International Kharkov Symposium on the Physics and Engineering of Microwaves, Millimeter, and Submillimeter Waves, Vol. 1, 421 - 423 ( 2004) . cond-mat/0401518. pdf

107. A. P. Zhuravel, Steven M. Anlage, and A. V. Ustinov, “ Microwave Current Imaging in Passive HTS Components by Low-Temperature Laser Scanning Microscopy (LTLSM) ,” J. Supercond. 19, 625-632 (2006) . DOI: 10.1007/s10948-006-0123-5 cond-mat/0311511. pdf

111. A. P. Zhuravel, A.G. Sivakov, O.G. Turutanov, A.N. Omelyanchouk, Steven M. Anlage, A.V. Ustinov, "Laser Scanning Microscope for HTS Films and Devices," Low Temperature Physics 32, 592-607 (2006) . cond-mat/0512582. pdf

115. A. P. Zhuravel, Steven M. Anlage, A.V. Ustinov, "Measurement of Local Reactive and Resistive Photoresponse of a Superconducting Microwave Device," Appl. Phys. Lett. 88 , 212503 (2006). cond-mat/0512572. pdf

121. A. P. Zhuravel, Steven M. Anlage, and A. V. Ustinov, “Imaging of Microscopic Sources of Resistive and Reactive Nonlinearities in Superconducting Microwave Devices,” IEEE Trans. Appl. Supercond. 17 ,  902 - 905 (2007).
DOI: 10.1109/TASC.2007.897322 . cond-mat/0609244. pdf

125. Alexander P. Zhuravel, Steven M. Anlage, Stephen Remillard , Alexey V. Ustinov, “Spatial Correlation of Linear and Nonlinear Electron Transport in a Superconducting Microwave Resonator: Laser Scanning Microscopy Analysis,” The Sixth International Kharkov Symposium on the Physics and Engineering of Microwaves, Millimeter, and Submillimeter Waves. pdf

133. A. P. Zhuravel, Steven M. Anlage, Stephen K. Remillard, A. V. Lukashenko, A. V. Ustinov, “Effect of LaAlO3 Twin-Domain Topology on Local DC and Microwave Properties of Cuprate Films,” J. Appl. Phys. 108, 033920 (2010). pdf

140.  Haig A. Atikian, Behnood G. Ghamsari, Steven M. Anlage, and A. Hamed Majedi, “Ultrafast Linear Kinetic Inductive Photoresponse of YBa2Cu3O7-d Meander-Line Structures by Photoimpedance Measurements,” Appl. Phys. Lett. 98, 081117 (2011). pdf

Cihan Kurter, Alexander P. Zhuravel, Alexey V. Ustinov, Steven M. Anlage, “Microscopic examination of hot spots giving rise to nonlinearity in superconducting resonators,” Phys. Rev. B 84, 104515 (2011). pdf

Alexander P. Zhuravel, Cihan Kurter, Alexey V. Ustinov, Steven M. Anlage, “Unconventional RF Photo-Response from a Superconducting Spiral Resonator,” Phys. Rev. B 85, 134535 (2012). pdf

G. Ciovati, Steven M. Anlage, C. Baldwin, G. Cheng, R. Flood, K. Jordan, P. Kneisel, M. Morrone, G. Nemes, L. Turlington, H. Wang, K. Wilson, and S. Zhang, “Low temperature laser scanning microscopy of a superconducting radio-frequency cavity,” Rev. Sci. Instrum. 83, 034704 (2012)pdf

161. A. P. Zhuravel, B. G. Ghamsari, C. Kurter, P. Jung, S. Remillard, J. Abrahams, A. V. Lukashenko, A. V. Ustinov, Steven M. Anlage, “Imaging the Anisotropic Nonlinear Meissner Effect in Nodal YBa2Cu3O7-δ Thin-Film Superconductors,” Phys. Rev. Lett. 110, 087002 (2013)pdf

Gianluigi Ciovati, Steven M. Anlage, and Alexander V. Gurevich, “Imaging of the Surface Resistance of an SRF Cavity by Low-Temperature Laser Scanning Microscopy,” IEEE Trans. Appl. Supercond. 23, 3500506 (2013). pdf

S.K. Remillard, D. Kirkendall, G. Ghigo, R. Gerbaldo, L. Gozzelino, F. Laviano, Z. Yang, N. Mendelsohn, B.G. Ghamsari, B. Friedman, P. Jung, S. M. Anlage, “Microwave Nonlinearity and Photoresponse of Superconducting Resonators with Columnar Defect Micro-Channels,” Supercond. Sci. Technol. 27, 095006 (2014). pdf

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