Vortex Matter in Superconductors at Extreme Scales and Conditions (VORTEX)


In this programme, the interaction of the vortex matter in superconductors with nano-engineered artificial pinning centers of different sizes and topologies (point defects, correlated linear defects, regular pinning arrays of antidots and magnetic dots, etc.) is investigated. Extreme length scales (regular and disordered submicron and nano-pinning arrays) and conditions (entangled flux lines, low temperatures, high magnetic fields, etc.) are used to study systematically and to optimize the vortex confinement, thus increasing the superconducting critical parameters (current and field) up to their theoretical limits. The fundamental principles of the quantum design of these parameters are worked out. Novel vortex phases (multiquanta and composite vortex lattices, vortex fluid coexisting with vortex solid, driven vortex lattices, entangled vortex matter, etc.) are studied experimentally by various vortex visualization techniques (STM, AFM, scanning Hall probe and SQUID microscopes, etc...), small angle neutron scattering and modeled using modern theoretical techniques. The fundamental research in the framework of these topics form the basis of the advanced knowledge of the vortex matter in superconductors and are also of importance for other scientific fields (superfluidity, hydrodynamics, liquid crystals).

VORTEX brochure (PDF 323 KB)

For more information about this programme and the teams involved,  please go to the programme‚Äôs home page. go to website


Five years, from 1999 to 2003.