European Commission logo
English English
CORDIS - EU research results

Unconventional Superconductivity and Strong Electron Correlations: a Cooperative mechanism

Project description

Research aims to decipher how electron interactions boost room-temperature superconductivity

The surprising discovery of high-temperature superconductivity in iron-containing chemical compounds in 2006 provided physicists with new ways of studying materials that conduct electricity without resistance above 0 °C. This unexpected behaviour detected in iron-based materials seems to arise out of a highly incoherent bad metal, which is characterised by strong electron interactions. Understanding how electrons overcome their mutual repulsion and flow freely in these materials is a big mystery in condensed matter physics. Hypothesising that this unconventional high-temperature superconductivity stems from coordinated electron interactions, the EU-funded SuperCoop project will develop efficient methods to describe the incoherent metallic phase of iron-based materials from which superconductivity emerges. The project will also investigate why the critical temperatures of chalcogenide systems are the highest amongst iron-based materials.


The understanding of optimal conditions giving rise to high temperature superconductivity is still a crucial challenge of condensed matter theory and the last obstacle for an effective design and exploitation of superconductors. In particular, the relationship between electronic correlations and superconductivity is still a puzzle: naively expected to always be “foes”, they appear more as “friends” in high temperature superconductors, where superconductivity usually emerges either from a doped Mott insulator or from an incoherent metal characterized by strong electronic correlations. In the last decade, the appearance of iron-based superconductors triggered the development of new ideas and theoretical tools, which allow us today to originally approach and solve the puzzle of the relationship between electronic correlations and high temperature superconductivity.
SuperCoop introduces and develops a scenario in which the key ingredient for superconductivity comes from a novel cooperative interplay between electronic correlations and magnetic interactions. Within SuperCoop we will develop efficient methods to describe the incoherent metallic phase of iron-based materials from which superconductivity emerges and to analyze the role of correlations effects on the pairing mediated by magnetic degrees of freedom. We will address questions that are at the forefront of the unconventional superconductivity field, including why the critical temperature of the chalcogenide systems are the highest among the iron-based materials.
SuperCoop will provide the ER with the opportunity to access world-class research institutes in US and EU to follow the training program needed for the development of the project. SuperCoop will enhance the ER scientific network and strengthen the leadership skills necessary to actively promote future collaborations between the host institutions and to establish a successful career in EU as a leader in the field.


Net EU contribution
€ 209 686,08
34136 Trieste

See on map

Nord-Est Friuli-Venezia Giulia Trieste
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Total cost
€ 209 686,08

Partners (1)