Superconductivity and Spin Fluctuations


The organizers of the Memorial Session for Herman Rietschel asked that I review some of the history of the interplay of superconductivity and spin fluctuations. Initially, Berk and Schrieffer showed how paramagnon spin fluctuations could suppress superconductivity in nearly-ferromagnetic materials. Following this, Rietschel and various co-workers wrote a number of papers in which they investigated the role of spin fluctuations in reducing the T_c of various electron-phonon superconductors. Paramagnon spin fluctuations are also believed to provide the p-wave pairing mechanism responsible for the superfluid phases of 3He^3He. More recently, antiferromagnetic spin fluctuations have been proposed as the mechanism for d-wave pairing in the heavy-fermion superconductors and in some organic materials as well as possibly the high T_c cuprates. Here I will review some of this early history and discuss some of the things we have learned more recently from numerical simulations.Comment: 9 pages, 10 encapsulated figures, Presented at MOS99, International Conference on Physics and Chemistry of Molecular and Oxide Superconductors, Stockholm, Sweden, 28 July-2 Aug, 1999, corrected typo

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