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Synthesis of murunskite single crystals: A bridge between cuprates and pnictides

Type of publication Peer-reviewed
Publikationsform Original article (peer-reviewed)
Author Tolj Davor, Ivšić Trpimir, Živković Ivica, Semeniuk Konstantin, Martino Edoardo, Akrap Ana, Reddy Priyanka, Klebel-Knobloch Benjamin, Lončarić Ivor, Forró László, Barišić Neven, Ronnow Henrik M., Sunko Denis K.,
Project Versatile high sensitivity and throughput magnetometer for quantum, functional and applied materials
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Original article (peer-reviewed)

Journal Applied Materials Today
Volume (Issue) 24
Page(s) 101096 - 101096
Title of proceedings Applied Materials Today
DOI 10.1016/j.apmt.2021.101096

Open Access


Numerous contemporary investigations in condensed matter physics are devoted to high temperature (high-Tc) cuprate superconductors. Despite its unique effulgence among research subjects, the enigma of the high-Tc mechanism still persists. One way to advance its understanding is to discover and study new analogous systems. Here we begin a novel exploration of the natural mineral murunskite, K2FeCu3S4, as an interpolation compound between cuprates and ferropnictides, the only known high-Tc superconductors at ambient pressure. Because in-depth studies can be carried out only on single crystals, we have mastered the synthesis and growth of high quality specimens. Similar to the cuprate parent compounds, these show semiconducting behavior in resistivity and optical transmittance, and an antiferromagnetic ordering at 100 K. Spectroscopy (XPS) and calculations (DFT) concur that the sulfur 3p orbitals are partially open, making them accessible for charge manipulation, which is a prerequisite for superconductivity in analogous layered structures. DFT indicates that the valence band is more cuprate-like, while the conduction band is more pnictide-like. With appropriate doping strategies, this parent compound promises exciting future developments.