We have measured and propose a model for switching rates in a hysteretic dc superconducting quantum interference device (SQUID) in the regime where phase-diffusion processes start to occur. We show that the switching rates in this regime are smaller than the rates given by Kramers’ formula due to retrapping of the Josephson phase. The retrapping process, which is affected by the frequency dependent impedance of the environment of the dc SQUID, leads to a peaked second moment of the switching distribution as a function of temperature. The temperatures where the peaks occur are proportional to the critical current of the dc SQUID.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/jaan_mannik/9/