Optical Enhancement of Superconductivity via Targeted Destruction of Charge Density Waves


It has been experimentally established that the occurrence of charge density waves is a common feature of various underdoped cuprate superconducting compounds. The observed states, which are often found in the form of bond density waves (BDWs), usually occur in a temperature regime immediately above the superconducting transition temperature. Motivated by recent optical experiments on superconducting materials, where it has been shown that optical irradiation can transiently improve the superconducting features, here we propose an approach for the enhancement of superconductivity by the targeted destruction of the BDW order which we expect to be more efficient than the previous methods. Since BDW states are usually found in competition with superconductivity, suppression of the BDW order enhances the tendency of electrons to form Cooper pairs after reaching a steady state. By investigating the optical coupling of gapless, collective fluctuations of the BDW modes, we argue that the resonant excitation of these modes can melt the underlying BDW order parameter. We propose an experimental setup to implement such an optical coupling using two-dimensional plasmon-polariton hybrid systems.

Physical Review B
Zachary M. Raines
Postdoctoral Associate
Victor M Galitski
Professor of Physics
Mohammad Hafezi
Professor of Physics