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Giant directional dichroism of terahertz light in resonance with magnetic excitations of the multiferroic oxide BaCo\(_2\)Ge\(_2\)O\(_7\)


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      We propose that concurrently magnetic and ferroelectric, i.e. multiferroic, compounds endowed with electrically-active magnetic excitations (electromagnons) provide a key to produce large directional dichroism for long wavelengths of light. By exploiting the control of ferroelectric polarization and magnetization in a multiferroic oxide Ba\(_2\)CoGe\(_2\)O\(_7\), we demonstrate the realization of such a directional light-switch function at terahertz frequecies in resonance with the electromagnon absorption. Our results imply that this hidden potential is present in a broad variety of multiferroics.

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      Observation of magnetoelectric jones birefringence

      In 1948, Jones showed that uniaxial media can in general show four different fundamental optical phenomena, each of which can appear in refraction and absorption. Three of these are well established: isotropic refraction and absorption, linear birefringence and dichroism, and circular birefringence and dichroism. The fourth effect, predicted by Jones, has remained unobserved so far. In this Letter, we report the first experimental observation of this missing fourth, so-called Jones effect, as an additional, tilted linear birefringence. In our experiments, this effect was induced in liquids by parallel external magnetic and electric fields perpendicular to the propagation direction.

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        26 October 2010
        1010.5420 10.1103/PhysRevLett.106.057403

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        Physical Review Letters 106, 057403 (2011)
        cond-mat.mtrl-sci cond-mat.str-el


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