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Rep Prog Phys. 2012 Oct;75(10):102501. Epub 2012 Sep 18.

Towards resolution of the Fermi surface in underdoped high-Tc superconductors.

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Cavendish Laboratory, Cambridge University, JJ Thomson Avenue, Cambridge CB3 0HE, UK.


We survey recent experimental results including quantum oscillations and complementary measurements probing the electronic structure of underdoped cuprates, and theoretical proposals to explain them. We discuss quantum oscillations measured at high magnetic fields in the underdoped cuprates that reveal a small Fermi surface section, comprising quasiparticles that obey Fermi-Dirac statistics, unaccompanied by other states of comparable thermodynamic mass at the Fermi level. The location of the observed Fermi surface section at the nodes is indicated by a body of evidence including the collapse in Fermi velocity measured by quantum oscillations, which is found to be associated with the nodal density of states observed in angular resolved photoemission, the persistence of quantum oscillations down to low fields in the vortex state, the small value of density of states from heat capacity and the multiple frequency quantum oscillation pattern consistent with nodal magnetic breakdown of bilayer-split pockets. A nodal Fermi surface pocket is further consistent with the observation of a density of states at the Fermi level concentrated at the nodes in photoemission experiments, and the antinodal pseudogap observed by photoemission, optical conductivity, nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) Knight shift, as well as other complementary diffraction, transport and thermodynamic measurements. One of the possibilities considered is that the small Fermi surface pockets observed at high magnetic fields can be understood in terms of Fermi surface reconstruction by a form of small wavevector charge order, observed over long lengthscales in experiments such as NMR and x-ray scattering, potentially accompanied by an additional mechanism to gap the antinodal density of states.

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