Yachin Ivry, Chung-Soo Kim, Andrew E. Dane, Domenico De Fazio, Adam N. McCaughan, Kristen A. Sunter, Qingyuan Zhao, and Karl K. Berggren
Thin superconducting films form a unique platform for geometrically confined, strongly interacting electrons. They allow an inherent competition between disorder and superconductivity, which in turn enables the intriguing superconducting-to-insulating transition and is believed to facilitate the comprehension of high‑Tc superconductivity. Furthermore, understanding thin film superconductivity is technologically essential, e.g., for photodetectors and quantum computers. Consequently, the absence of established universal relationships between critical temperature (Tc), film thickness (d), and sheet resistance (Rs) hinders both our understanding of the onset of the superconductivity and the development of miniaturized superconducting devices. We report that in thin films, superconductivity scales as dTc(Rs). We demonstrated this scaling by analyzing the data published over the past 46 years for different materials (and facilitated this database for further analysis). Moreover, we experimentally confirmed the discovered scaling for NbN films, quantified it with a power law, explored its possible origin, and demonstrated its usefulness for nanometer-length-scale superconducting film-based devices.