The discovery of high‐temperature superconductors has stimulated dramatic growth in our understanding of the physics of quantized vortex lines. These superconductors exclude magnetic fields weaker than a lower critical field tesla. Stronger fields penetrate as an array of vortices, each consisting of exactly one quantum of flux surrounded in the plane perpendicular to the field by circulating supercurrents that extend radially a few hundred nanometers. The behavior of vortices dominates many physical properties of high‐temperature superconductors up to the upper critical field tesla, where superconductivity gives way to normal metallic behavior and magnetic fields penetrate uniformly.
Our understanding of vortex matter in superconductors has grown dramatically in the last decade, creating new horizons in fundamental science and potential commercial applications.