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Magnetic phase diagram of the multiferroic FeTe\(_2\)O\(_5\)Br

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      Abstract

      The low-temperature magnetic phase diagram of the multiferroic system FeTe\(_2\)O\(_5\)Br down to 300 mK and up to 9 T is presented. Short-range magnetic correlations within the crystal layers start to develop already at \(\sim\)50 K, i.e., far above \(T_{N1} \sim\) 11.0 K, where the system undergoes a magnetic phase transition into the high-temperature incommensurate (HT-ICM) phase. Only 0.5 K lower, at \(T_{N2}\), the system undergoes a second phase transition into the low-temperature incommensurate amplitude-modulated (LT-ICM) phase accompanied by a spontaneous electric polarization. When the magnetic field is applied, the transition temperatures shift depending on the field orientation. In the case of \(B||b\) and \(B >\) 4.5 T, the HT-ICM phase disappears along with the electric polarization in the LT-ICM phase. The field dependence of the magnetic transition temperatures is explained in the context of the magnetic susceptibility behavior. Similarities and differences between the novel amplitude-modulated and well-established helicoidal magnetoelectrics are discussed.

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      Multiferroic and magnetoelectric materials.

      A ferroelectric crystal exhibits a stable and switchable electrical polarization that is manifested in the form of cooperative atomic displacements. A ferromagnetic crystal exhibits a stable and switchable magnetization that arises through the quantum mechanical phenomenon of exchange. There are very few 'multiferroic' materials that exhibit both of these properties, but the 'magnetoelectric' coupling of magnetic and electrical properties is a more general and widespread phenomenon. Although work in this area can be traced back to pioneering research in the 1950s and 1960s, there has been a recent resurgence of interest driven by long-term technological aspirations.
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        Magnetic control of ferroelectric polarization.

        The magnetoelectric effect--the induction of magnetization by means of an electric field and induction of polarization by means of a magnetic field--was first presumed to exist by Pierre Curie, and subsequently attracted a great deal of interest in the 1960s and 1970s (refs 2-4). More recently, related studies on magnetic ferroelectrics have signalled a revival of interest in this phenomenon. From a technological point of view, the mutual control of electric and magnetic properties is an attractive possibility, but the number of candidate materials is limited and the effects are typically too small to be useful in applications. Here we report the discovery of ferroelectricity in a perovskite manganite, TbMnO3, where the effect of spin frustration causes sinusoidal antiferromagnetic ordering. The modulated magnetic structure is accompanied by a magnetoelastically induced lattice modulation, and with the emergence of a spontaneous polarization. In the magnetic ferroelectric TbMnO3, we found gigantic magnetoelectric and magnetocapacitance effects, which can be attributed to switching of the electric polarization induced by magnetic fields. Frustrated spin systems therefore provide a new area to search for magnetoelectric media.
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          Spin current and magneto-electric effect in non-collinear magnets

          A new microscopic mechanism of the magneto-electric (ME) effect based on the spin supercurrent is theoretically presented for non-collinear magnets. The close analogy between the superconductors (charge current) and magnets (spin current) is drawn to derive the distribution of the spin supercurrent and the resultant electric polarization. Application to the spiral spin structure is discussed.
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            Author and article information

            Journal
            20 August 2010
            1008.3487 10.1103/PhysRevB.82.144438

            http://arxiv.org/licenses/nonexclusive-distrib/1.0/

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            cond-mat.str-el

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