Directly characterizing the relative strength and momentum dependence of electron-phonon coupling using resonant inelastic x-ray scattering

10 May 2016  ·  Devereaux T. P., Shvaika A. M., Wu K., Wohlfeld K., Jia C. J., Wang Y., Moritz B., Chaix L., Lee W. -S., Shen Z. -X., Ghiringhelli G., Braicovich L. ·

The coupling between lattice and charge degrees of freedom in condensed matter materials is ubiquitous and can often result in interesting properties and ordered phases, including conventional superconductivity, charge density wave order, and metal-insulator transitions. Angle-resolved photoemission spectroscopy and both neutron and non-resonant x-ray scattering serve as effective probes for determining the behavior of appropriate, individual degrees of freedom -- the electronic structure and lattice excitation, or phonon dispersion, respectively... However, each provides less direct information about the mutual coupling between the degrees of freedom, usual through self-energy effects, which tend to renormalize and broaden spectral features precisely where the coupling is strong, impacting ones ability to quantitively characterize the coupling. Here we demonstrate that resonant inelastic x-ray scattering, or RIXS, can be an effective tool to directly determine the relative strength and momentum dependence of the electron-phonon coupling in condensed matter systems. Using a diagrammatic approach for an 8-band model of copper oxides, we study the contributions from the lowest order diagrams to the full RIXS intensity for a realistic scattering geometry, accounting for matrix element effects in the scattering cross-section as well as the momentum dependence of the electron-phonon coupling vertex. A detailed examination of these maps offers a unique perspective into the characteristics of electron-phonon coupling, which complements both neutron and non-resonant x-ray scattering, as well as Raman and infrared conductivity. read more

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Strongly Correlated Electrons Materials Science Superconductivity