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Phys Rev Lett. 2008 Feb 1;100(4):047004. Epub 2008 Feb 1.

Small Fermi surface pockets in underdoped high temperature superconductors: observation of Shubnikov-de Haas oscillations in YBa2Cu4O8.

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H. H. Wills Physics Laboratory, University of Bristol, Tyndall Avenue, BS8 1TL, United Kingdom.


We report the observation of Shubnikov-de Haas oscillations in the underdoped cuprate superconductor YBa2Cu4O8 (Y124). For fields aligned along the c axis, the frequency of the oscillations is 660+/-30 T, which corresponds to approximately 2.4% of the total area of the first Brillouin zone. The effective mass of the quasiparticles on this orbit is measured to be 2.7+/-0.3 times the free electron mass. Both the frequency and mass are comparable to those recently observed for ortho-II YBa2Cu3O6.5 (Y123-II). We show that although small Fermi surface pockets may be expected from band-structure calculations in Y123-II, no such pockets are predicted for Y124. Our results therefore imply that these small pockets are a generic feature of the copper oxide plane in underdoped cuprates.

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