Superconductivity in Compression-Shear Deformed Diamond
Diamond is a prototypical ultrawide band gap semiconductor, but turns into a superconductor with a critical temperature Tc≈4 K near 3% boron doping [E. A. Ekimov et al., Nature (London) 428, 542 (2004)]. Here we unveil a surprising new route to superconductivity in undoped diamond by compression-shear deformation that induces increasing metallization and lattice softening with rising strain, producing phonon mediated Tc up to 2.4–12.4 K for a wide range of Coulomb pseudopotential μ∗=0.15–0.05. This finding raises intriguing prospects of generating robust superconductivity in strained diamond crystal, showcasing a distinct and hitherto little explored approach to driving materials into superconducting states via strain engineering. These results hold promise for discovering superconductivity in normally nonsuperconductive materials, thereby expanding the landscape of viable nontraditional superconductors and offering actionable insights for experimental exploration.