We study how the non-Fermi-liquid nature of the overscreened multi-channel Kondo impurity model affects the response to a BCS pairing term that, in the absence of the impurity, opens a gap Δ. We find that the low-energy spectrum in the limit Δ → 0 actually does not correspond to the spectrum strictly at Δ = 0. In particular, in the two-channel Kondo model the Δ → 0 ground state is an orbitally degenerate spin-singlet, while it is an orbital singlet with a residual spin degeneracy at Δ = 0. In addition, there are fractionalized spin-1/2 sub-gap excitations whose energy in units of Δ tends towards a finite and universal value when Δ → 0; as if the universality of the anomalous power-law exponents that characterise the overscreened Kondo effect turned into universal energy ratios when the scale invariance is broken by Δ ≠ 0. This intriguing phenomenon can be explained by the renormalisation flow towards the overscreened fixed point and the gap cutting off the orthogonality catastrophe singularities. We also find other non-Fermi liquid features at finite Δ: the local density of states lacks coherence peaks, the states in the continuum above the gap are unconventional, and the boundary entropy is a non-monotonic function of temperature. The persistent sub-gap excitations are characteristic of the non-Fermi-liquid fixed-point of the model, and thus depend on the impurity spin and the number of screening channels.
|Titolo:||Non-Fermi-liquid behavior in quantum impurity models with superconducting channels|
|Autori:||Žitko, Rok; Fabrizio, Michele|
|Rivista:||PHYSICAL REVIEW. B|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2017|
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI):||10.1103/PhysRevB.95.085121|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||1.1 Journal article|