Kerr rotation in the unconventional superconductor Sr2RuO4

Martin Gradhand, Karol I. Wysokinski, James F. Annett, Balazs L. Györffy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

35 Citations (Scopus)


The interpretation of Kerr rotation measurements in the superconducting phase of Sr$_2$RuO$_4$ is a controversial topic. Both intrinsic and extrinsic mechanisms have been proposed, and it has been argued that the intrinsic response vanishes by symmetry. We focus on the intrinsic contribution and clarify several conflicting results in the literature. On the basis of symmetry considerations and detailed calculations we show that the intrinsic Kerr signal is not forbidden in a general multi- band system but has a rich structure in the near infrared regime. We distinguish different optical transitions determined by the superconducting gap (far infrared) and the inter orbital coupling of the normal state (near infrared). We argue that the low frequency transitions do not contribute to the Hall conductivity while only the inter-orbital transitions in the near infrared regime contribute. Finally, we discuss the difficulties to connect the calculations for the optical Hall conductivity to the experimental measurement of the Kerr angle. We will compare different approximations which might lead to conflicting results.
Original languageEnglish
Article number094504
JournalPhysical Review B: Condensed Matter and Materials Physics
Issue number9
Early online date29 Jul 2013
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2013

Bibliographical note

9 pages, 8 figures, 1 table


  • cond-mat.supr-con
  • cond-mat.mtrl-sci


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  • research collaboration

    James F Annett (Contributor)

    1 Aug 1998

    Activity: Other activity types - Research and Teaching at External Organisation

  • HPC (High Performance Computing) Facility

    Sadaf R Alam (Manager), Steven A Chapman (Manager), Polly E Eccleston (Other), Simon H Atack (Other) & D A G Williams (Manager)

    Facility/equipment: Facility

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