Gd2Te3: an antiferromagnetic semimetal.

08:00 EDT 2nd April 2019 | BioPortfolio

Summary of "Gd2Te3: an antiferromagnetic semimetal."

We report the results of high-precision magnetization ($M(T,H)$), magnetic susceptibility ($\chi(T,H)$) and specific heat ($C_p(T,H)$) [`zero-field' electrical resistivity, $\rho(T,H=0)$] measurements carried out on Gd$_2$Te$_3$ single crystal over wide ranges of temperature 2 K - 350 K [2 K - 300 K] and magnetic field 0.05 T - 9.0 T with either $H \parallel b$-axis or $H \parallel ac$-plane. $M(T,H)$ and $\chi(T,H)$ unambiguously establish that the $b$-axis is the easy direction of magnetization whereas any direction in the $ac$-plane is a hard direction. The $\lambda$-type anomaly in `zero-field' specific heat, $C_p(T, H = 0)$, and an abrupt drop in $\rho(T,H=0)$ (\textit{characteristic} of the paramagnetic (PM) - antiferromagnetic (AFM) phase transition) are observed at the N\'{e}el temperature, $T_N$ = 15.3(1)~K. $\chi(T,H)$ and $C_p(T,H)$ clearly demonstrate that $T_N$ shifts to lower temperatures with increasing $H$ irrespective of whether $H$ points in the easy or hard direction. When $H \parallel b$, the $M(H)$ isotherms at temperatures in the range 2.5 K $\leq$ $T$ $\leq$ 10 K reveal the existence of a \textit{field-induced} spin-flop (SF) transition at fields 4.0 T $\leq$ $H_{SF}$ $\leq$ 4.5 T. An overall metallic behavior and relatively large magnitude (5 - 10 m$\Omega$\,cm) of $\rho(T,H=0)$ is consistent with the semi-metallic nature of Gd$_2$Te$_3$. The first principles electronic band structure and density of states calculations, based on the density functional theory, correctly predict an AFM ground state (stabilized primarily by the 4$f$ Gd$^{3+}$ - 5$p$ Te$^{2-}$ - 4$f$ Gd$^{3+}$ superexchange interactions) and semi-metallic behavior for the Gd$_2$Te$_3$ compound. Moreover, these calculations yield the values $\mu_{Gd}$ = 7.1 $\mu_{B}$ for the ordered magnetic moment per Gd atom at T = 0, $\gamma$ = 0.14 mJ mol$^{-1}$ K$^{-2}$ for the Sommerfeld coefficient for the electronic specific heat contribution and $\theta_{\rm CW}$ = - 3.32 K for the Curie-Weiss temperature, respectively. These theoretical estimates conform well with the corresponding experimental values $\mu_{Gd}$ = 7.0 $\mu_{B}$, $\gamma$= 0.18(3) mJ mol$^{-1}$ K$^{-2}$ and $\theta_{\rm CW}$ = - 3.6 K. .


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This article was published in the following journal.

Name: Journal of physics. Condensed matter : an Institute of Physics journal
ISSN: 1361-648X


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