Kinetics of nonequilibrium quasiparticle tunneling in superconducting charge qubits
Journal article, 2008
We directly observe low-temperature nonequilibrium quasiparticle tunneling in charge qubits based on the single-Cooper-pair box. We measure even- and odd-state dwell-time distributions as a function of temperature, and interpret these results using a kinetic theory. While the even-state lifetime is exponentially distributed, the odd-state distribution is more heavily weighted to short times, implying that odd-to-even tunnel events are not described by a homogenous Poisson process. The mean odd-state dwell time increases sharply at low temperature, which is consistent with quasiparticles tunneling out of the island before reaching thermal equilibrium.