Pair-density-wave superconducting order in two-leg ladders

Akbar Jaefari, Eduardo Fradkin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We show using bosonization methods that extended Hubbard-Heisenberg models on two types of two leg ladders (without flux and with flux π per plaquette) have commensurate pair-density-wave (PDW) phases. In the case of the conventional (flux-less) ladder, the PDW arises when certain filling fractions for which commensurability conditions are met. For the flux π ladder, the PDW phase is generally present. The PDW phase is characterized by a finite spin gap and a superconducting order parameter with a finite (commensurate in this case) wave vector and power-law superconducting correlations. In this phase, the uniform superconducting order parameter, the 2k F charge-density-wave (CDW) order parameter and the spin-density-wave Néel order parameter exhibit short range (exponentially decaying) correlations. We discuss in detail the case in which the bonding band of the ladder is half filled for which the PDW phase appears even at weak coupling. The PDW phase is shown to be dual to a uniform superconducting (SC) phase with quasi-long-range order. By making use of bosonization and the renormalization group, we determine the phase diagram of the spin-gapped regime and study the quantum phase transition. The phase boundary between PDW and the uniform SC ordered phases is found to be in the Ising universality class. We generalize the analysis to the case of other commensurate fillings of the bonding band, where we find higher-order commensurate PDW states for which we determine the form of the effective bosonized field theory and discuss the phase diagram. We compare our results with recent findings in the Kondo-Heisenberg chain. We show that the formation of PDW order in the ladder embodies the notion of intertwined orders.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number035104
JournalPhysical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jan 9 2012

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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