Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Predicting a chain of order

07.03.2011
Calculations can now predict when and how spins of electrons and ions arrange in one-dimensional multiferroic materials

The properties of a material are greatly affected by the electrical and magnetic structure of its constituent ions and electrons. In a ferromagnet, for example, neighboring electron spins point in the same direction, producing a strong external magnetic field. In an antiferromagnet, however, neighboring spins point in opposite directions, negating its magnetism. This behavior can be exploited in devices ranging from switches to memory and computers.


Figure 1: A one-dimensional chain of spins (red arrows), showing a chiral ordering (or spiral), which rotate (blue arrows) in response to incoming light radiation. Copyright : 2011 The American Physical Society

Multiferroic materials exhibit an even richer physics—and an expanded set of applications—because their magnetic and electrical orderings are linked. However, the magnetic and electrical structuring of multiferroics is not yet completely understood. Now, Shunsuke Furukawa, Masahiro Sato and Shigeki Onoda of the RIKEN Advanced Science Institute, Wako, have successfully calculated how magnetic ordering arises in one-dimensional multiferroic materials—the simplest example of these materials[1].

This simplicity means that one-dimensional multiferroic materials are useful models for understanding multidimensional, or ‘bulk’, multiferroic materials. Their one-dimensional chain of spins can not only assume a variety of ferromagnetic and anti-ferromagnetic alignments, but they can also arrange into more complicated patterns, including spirals defined over long portions of the chain—referred to as ‘long-range chiral order’ (Fig. 1). Understanding these exotic patterns may lead to new foundational science, as well as new applications. In addition, a one-dimensional chain can also exhibit the electrical control of magnetic structure and the response to light that is characteristic of more complex multiferroics.

Onoda and colleagues focused on describing the magnetic structure in a one-dimensional chain in terms of how strongly neighboring spins were coupled to each other. They began by using a computational technique that uniquely allows for the accurate treatment of an infinitely large collection of spins to construct a phase diagram describing how spin ordering changed as the type of spin-to-spin coupling in the material changed. Most notably, the diagram indicated that ferromagnetic coupling between nearest neighbors was much more likely to cause a long-range chiral order than anti-ferromagnetic coupling.

This observation successfully explained the experimentally observed spin ordering of several one-dimensional multiferroic cuprates. In particular, the research team was able to correctly predict that the bulk multiferroic material LiCu2O2, whose unique physics has drawn the attention of physicists for over a decade, exhibits chiral order and has a unique response to light. "These results confirm that one-dimensional multiferroics are an ideal laboratory for studying spin dynamics", says Onoda, and he feels that the calculations will promote studies on new one-dimensional multiferroics and other novel states of matter.

The corresponding author for this highlight is based at the Condensed Matter Theory Laboratory, RIKEN Advance Science Institute

Journal information

[1] Furukawa, S., Sato, M. & Onoda, S. Chiral order and electromagnetic dynamics in one-dimensional multiferroic cuprates. Physical Review Letters 105, 257205 (2010).

gro-pr | Research asia research news
Further information:
http://www.rikenresearch.riken.jp/eng/research/6535
http://www.researchsea.com

More articles from Physics and Astronomy:

nachricht From rocks in Colorado, evidence of a 'chaotic solar system'
23.02.2017 | University of Wisconsin-Madison

nachricht Prediction: More gas-giants will be found orbiting Sun-like stars
22.02.2017 | Carnegie Institution for Science

All articles from Physics and Astronomy >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Safe glide at total engine failure with ELA-inside

On January 15, 2009, Chesley B. Sullenberger was celebrated world-wide: after the two engines had failed due to bird strike, he and his flight crew succeeded after a glide flight with an Airbus A320 in ditching on the Hudson River. All 155 people on board were saved.

On January 15, 2009, Chesley B. Sullenberger was celebrated world-wide: after the two engines had failed due to bird strike, he and his flight crew succeeded...

Im Focus: Breakthrough with a chain of gold atoms

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

Im Focus: DNA repair: a new letter in the cell alphabet

Results reveal how discoveries may be hidden in scientific “blind spots”

Cells need to repair damaged DNA in our genes to prevent the development of cancer and other diseases. Our cells therefore activate and send “repair-proteins”...

Im Focus: Dresdner scientists print tomorrow’s world

The Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and Technische Universität Dresden inaugurated their jointly operated Center for Additive Manufacturing Dresden (AMCD) with a festive ceremony on February 7, 2017. Scientists from various disciplines perform research on materials, additive manufacturing processes and innovative technologies, which build up components in a layer by layer process. This technology opens up new horizons for component design and combinations of functions. For example during fabrication, electrical conductors and sensors are already able to be additively manufactured into components. They provide information about stress conditions of a product during operation.

The 3D-printing technology, or additive manufacturing as it is often called, has long made the step out of scientific research laboratories into industrial...

Im Focus: Mimicking nature's cellular architectures via 3-D printing

Research offers new level of control over the structure of 3-D printed materials

Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Booth and panel discussion – The Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings at the AAAS 2017 Annual Meeting

13.02.2017 | Event News

Complex Loading versus Hidden Reserves

10.02.2017 | Event News

International Conference on Crystal Growth in Freiburg

09.02.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

New pop-up strategy inspired by cuts, not folds

27.02.2017 | Materials Sciences

Sandia uses confined nanoparticles to improve hydrogen storage materials performance

27.02.2017 | Interdisciplinary Research

Decoding the genome's cryptic language

27.02.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>