Surface superconductivity in thin cylindrical bi nanowire

Mingliang Tian, Jian Wang, Wei Ning, Thomas E. Mallouk, Moses H.W. Chan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


The physical origin and the nature of superconductivity in nanostructured Bi remains puzzling. Here, we report transport measurements of individual cylindrical single-crystal Bi nanowires, 20 and 32 nm in diameter. In contrast to nonsuperconducting Bi nanoribbons with two flat surfaces, cylindrical Bi nanowires show superconductivity below 1.3 K. However, their superconducting critical magnetic fields decrease with their diameter, which is the opposite of the expected behavior for thin superconducting wires. Quasiperiodic oscillations of magnetoresistance were observed in perpendicular fields but were not seen in the parallel orientation. These results can be understood by a model of surface superconductivity with an enhanced surface-to-bulk volume in small diameter wires, where the superconductivity originates from the strained surface states of the nanowires due to the surface curvature-induced stress.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1487-1492
Number of pages6
JournalNano letters
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 11 2015

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Bioengineering
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanical Engineering


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