Wednesday, December 5, 2012

1212.0485 (J. Hwang et al.)

Successive magnetic phase transitions and multiferroicity in Spin-1
triangular lattice antiferromagnet Ba$_3$NiNb$_2$O$_9$

J. Hwang, E. S. Choi, F. Ye, C. R. Dela Cruz, Y. Xin, H. D. Zhou, P. Schlottmann
We report the magnetic and electric properties of Ba$_3$NiNb$_2$O$_9$, which is a quasi-two-dimensional spin-1 triangular lattice antiferromagnet (TLAF) with trigonal structure. At low $T$ and with increasing magnetic field, the system evolves from a 120 degree magnetic ordering phase (A phase) to an up-up-down ($uud$) phase (B phase) with a change of slope at 1/3 of the saturation magnetization, and then to an "oblique" phase (C phase). Accordingly, the ferroelectricity switches on at each phase boundary with appearance of spontaneous polarization. Therefore, Ba$_3$NiNb$_2$O$_9$ is a unique TLAF exhibiting both $uud$ phase and multiferroicity.
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