Frustration wave order in iron(II) oxide spinels

Giuditta Perversi, Angel M. Arevalo-lopez, Clemens Ritter, J. Paul Attfield

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Frustrated magnetic materials can show unconventional correlations such as quantum spin liquid states and monopole excitations in spin ices. These phenomena are observed on uniformly frustrated lattices such as triangular, kagome or pyrochlore types where all nearest neighbour interactions are equivalent. Here we report incommensurate long range spin amplitude waves in the spinels Fe2GeO4 and -Fe2SiO4 at low temperatures which indicate that that the degree of frustration may itself be a fluctuating quantity that can spontaneously order without a lattice distortion as a ‘frustration wave’. Fe2GeO4 with propagation vector (⅔+ ⅔+ 0) has ordered Fe2+ moments that vary between fully saturated 4 B and zero values, consistent with a frustration wave order. -Fe2SiO4 has a more complex (¾+¾+ 0) order that coexists with an ordered spin ice phase. Dynamic orbital fluctuations are proposed to give rise to locally correlated patterns of ferromagnetic and antiferromagnetic interactions consistent with the observed orders.
Original languageEnglish
JournalCommunications Physics
Issue number1
Early online date29 Oct 2018
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 29 Oct 2018


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