Mean-field analysis of intra-unit-cell order in the Emery model of the CuO2 plane

Mark H. Fischer, Eun Ah Kim

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Motivated by recent experiments on high-Tc cuprate superconductors pointing toward intra-unit-cell (IUC) order in the pseudogap phase, we investigate three distinct intra-unit-cell-ordering possibilities: nematic, nematic-spin-nematic, and current-loop order. The first two are Fermi-surface instabilities involving a spontaneous charge and magnetization imbalance between the two oxygen sites in the unit cell, respectively, while the third describes circulating currents within the unit cell. We analyze the three-band Emery model of a single CuO2 layer including various on-site and nearest-neighbor interactions within a self-consistent mean-field approach. We show how these on-site and further-neighbor repulsions suppress or enhance particular IUC orders. In particular, we show that the attractive interactions necessary for nematic and nematic-spin-nematic orders in one-band models have their natural microscopic origin in the O-O on-site and nearest-neighbor repulsions in the three-band model. Finally, we find that while the nematic and nematic-spin-nematic orders cannot coexist in this framework, the loop-current order can coexist with nematic order.

Original languageEnglish
Article number144502
JournalPhysical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics
Issue number14
StatePublished - 3 Oct 2011


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