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|Title:||Neutron Scattering Studies of Magnetic Oxides based on Triangular Motifs|
|Advisor:||Gaulin, Bruce D.|
|Department:||Physics and Astronomy|
|Keywords:||neutron scattering;magnetic oxides;crystal growth;geometric frustration;spin glasses;quantum phase transitions;Condensed Matter Physics;Condensed Matter Physics|
|Abstract:||<p>The following dissertation presents neutron scattering studies on three specific magnetic insulating oxide materials whose lattice is based on triangular structural motifs. Each of the three materials studied, LuCoGaO<sub>4</sub>, Co<sub>3</sub>V<sub>2</sub>O<sub>8</sub> and Tb<sub>2</sub>Ti<sub>2</sub>O<sub>7</sub>, displays an interesting disordered ground state that is reached by different mechanisms: site disorder, geometric frustration, and quantum fluctuations induced by a transverse magnetic field. The main focus of this work is the characterization of the resulting magnetic ground states and magnetic excitations within these systems.</p> <p>Chapters 3, 4 and 5 contain original work in the form of six research articles that have either been published or have been prepared for publication in peer-reviewed journals.</p> <p>Chapter 3 describes studies of the quasi two-dimensional triangular layered antiferromagnet LuCoGaO<sub>4</sub>. This material is found to exhibit a spin glass ground state as a result of geometrical frustration and site disorder inherent in this system. Below the freezing temperature, this system exhibits static, two-dimensional correlations consistent with frozen short-range correlated regions in the plane of the bilayers that extend over roughly five unit cells. The dynamic correlations reveal typical spin glass behavior upon cooling. Furthermore, a resonant gapped spin-wave-like excitation is observed, that can be related to the anisotropy in the system. Such an excitation is relatively uncommon in spin glasses and has been studied for the first time in such detail.</p> <p>Chapter 4 is concerned with the study of the kagome staircase system Co<sub>3</sub>V<sub>2</sub>O<sub>8</sub>. While prone to geometrical frustration due to its underlying kagome structural motif, this material is characterized by predominantly ferromagnetic interactions that lead to an unfrustrated, ferromagnetic ground state. In this chapter, departures from this conventional ground state by different disordering mechanisms are investigated. The first part focuses on the effects of site disorder by introducing quenched nonmagnetic impurities into the system. The growth of single crystals of (Co<sub>1-x</sub>Mg<sub>x</sub>)<sub>3</sub>V<sub>2</sub>O<sub>8</sub> is reported. These crystals reveal that the ferromagnetic ground state is very sensitive to doping, and show that a low doping concentration of 19% leads to a suppression of the ferromagnetic ground state below 1.5 K. This could be understood as percolation problem on the quasi two-dimensional kagome lattice including site and bond percolation. The second part focuses on the influence of a transverse magnetic field on the ground state of Ising spins, introducing quantum fluctuations that lead to quantum phase transitions at ~6.25, 7 and 13 T. The observed quantum phase transitions are characterized by distinct changes in the magnetic structure and their associated spin excitation spectra.</p> <p>Chapter 5 presents studies on the pyrochlore antiferromagnet Tb<sub>2</sub>Ti<sub>2</sub>O<sub>7</sub>, which is a proposed spin liquid candidate but whose actual ground state is still the topic of current debate. The ground state of Tb<sub>2</sub>Ti<sub>2</sub>O<sub>7</sub> was revisited by neutron scattering measurements, revealing a new phase in the low temperature low field phase diagram that can be described as a frozen antiferromagnetic spin ice that exhibits distinct elastic and inelastic scattering features.</p>|
|Appears in Collections:||Open Access Dissertations and Theses|
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