Although superconductivity in the vicinity of an antiferromagnetic (AFM) instability has been extensively explored in the last three decades or so, superconductivity in compounds with a background of ferromagnetic (FM) spin fluctuations is still rare. We report As75 nuclear quadrupole resonance measurements on the A2Cr3As3 family, which is the first group of Cr-based superconductors at ambient pressure, with A being alkali elements. From the temperature dependence of the spin-lattice relaxation rate (1/T1), we find that by changing A in the order of A=Na, Na0.75K0.25, K, and Rb, the system is tuned to approach a possible FM quantum critical point (QCP). This may be ascribed to the Cr2-As2-Cr2 bond angle that decreases towards 90°, which enhances the FM interaction via the Cr2-As2-Cr2 path. Upon moving away from the QCP, the superconducting transition temperature Tsc increases progressively up to 8.0 K in Na2Cr3As3, which is in sharp contrast to the AFM case where Tsc usually shows a maximum around a QCP. The 1/T1 decreases rapidly below Tsc with no Hebel-Slichter peak, and ubiquitously follows a T5 variation below a characteristic temperature T∗≈0.6 Tsc, which indicates the existence of point nodes in the superconducting gap function commonly in the family. These results suggest that the A2Cr3As3 family is a possible solid-state analog of superfluid He3.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)