A previously developed model of charge transfer in YBa2Cu3O7/PrBa2Cu3O7 (YBCO-PBCO) superlattices is described in detail, refinements of the approach are discussed, and extensions are made to barrier layers other than PBCO, e.g., Pr0.7Y0.3Ba2Cu3O7 and Pr0.5Ca0.5Ba2Cu3O7. An expression for the energy of a supercell as a function of the charges transferred from the barrier layers to the YBCO is set up and minimized subject to the constraint of charge neutrality of the supercell. The approximate distribution of the transferred charge between the chain and CuO2 plane regions within a given YBCO unit cell is found by invoking symmetry arguments and results from Y1-xPrxBa2Cu3O7 alloys. The dependence of the superconducting transition temperature on the hole density in the CuO2 planes is taken from a spinpolaron theory of high-Tc superconductivity which gives a good fit to the experimentally measured Tc(x) function in bulk YBCO and La2-xSrxCuO4. Satisfactory agreement with the measured Tc values at the midpoint of the resistive transition region for a variety of YBCO superlattices is found. Experimental evidence in support of charge transfer as the main mechanism determining Tc is cited. It is emphasized that pairing interactions between YBCO unit cells are not the origin of high-Tc superconductivity in these materials.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Condensed Matter Physics