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Non-Fermi-liquid types of behavior associated with a magnetic quantum critical point in Sr(Co1-xNix)(2)As-2 single crystals
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Materials and Environmental Chemistry (MMK).ORCID iD: 0000-0003-0763-1457
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Number of Authors: 92019 (English)In: Physical Review B, ISSN 2469-9950, E-ISSN 2469-9969, Vol. 100, no 9, article id 094447Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The compound SrCo2As2 with the body-centered tetragonal ThCr2Si2 structure is known to remain paramagnetic down to a temperature T = 0.05 K, but inelastic neutron scattering studies have shown that both ferromagnetic (FM) and antiferromagnetic (AFM) fluctuations occur in single crystals. Thus it is of interest to study how the magnetism evolves on doping SrCo2As2. Previous work on polycrystalline samples of Sr(Co1-xNix)(2)As-2 indicated the development of AFM order for 0 < x less than or similar to 0.3. Here we studied single crystals of Sr(Co1-xNix)(2)As-2 for 0 < x <= 1 and confirmed the occurrence of AFM order which we deduce to have a c-axis helix structure. We also find evidence for an unusual composition-induced magnetic quantum critical point at x approximate to 0.3 where non-Fermi-liquid types of behavior were revealed by heat capacity and electrical resisitivity measurements at low T. Electron-doped Sr (Co1-xNix)(2)As-2 single crystals with compositions x = 0 to 0.9 were grown out of self-flux and SrNi2As2 single crystals out of Bi flux. The crystals were characterized using single-crystal x-ray diffraction (XRD) at room temperature, and magnetic susceptibility chi (H, T), isothermal magnetization M(H, T), heat capacity C-p (H, T), and electrical resistivity rho(H, T) measurements versus applied magnetic field H and T. The XRD studies show that the system undergoes a continuous structural crossover from the uncollapsed-tetragonal (ucT) structure to the collapsed tetragonal (cT) structure with increasing Ni doping. The chi (T) data show that SrCo2As2 exhibits an AFM ground state almost immediately upon Ni doping on the Co site. Ab initio electronic-structure calculations for x = 0 and 0.15 indicate that a flat band with a peak in the density of states just above the Fermi energy is responsible for this initial magnetic-ordering behavior on Ni doping. The AFM ordering is observed in the range 0.013 <= x <= 0.25 with the ordered moments aligned in the ab plane and with a maximum ordering temperature T-N = 26.5 K at x = 0.10. The Curie-Weiss-like T dependence of chi in the paramagnetic (PM) state indicates dominant FM interactions. The behavior of the anisotropic susceptibilities below T-N suggests a planar helical magnetic ground state with a composition-dependent pitch based on a local-moment molecular-field-theory model, with FM interactions in the ab plane and weaker AFM interactions along the helix c axis. However, the small ordered (saturation) moments similar to 0.1 mu(B) per transition metal atom, where mu(B) is the Bohr magneton, and the values of the Rhodes-Wohlfarth ratio indicate that the magnetism is itinerant. The high-field M(H) isotherms and the low-field chi(-1) (T > T-N) data were successfully analyzed within the framework of Takahashi's theory of FM spin fluctuations. The C-p (T) at low T exhibits Fermi-liquid behavior for 0 <= x <= 0.15, whereas an evolution to a logarithmic non-Fermi-liquid (NFL) behavior is found for x = 0.2 to 0.3. The logarithmic dependence is suppressed in an applied magnetic field. The low-T rho(H = 0, T) data show a T-2 dependence for 0 <= x <= 0.20 and a power-law dependence rho(H = 0, T) = rho(0) + AT(n) with n < 2 for x = 0.20 and 0.30. The exponent n shows a notable field dependence, suggesting both doping- and magnetic-field-tuned quantum critical phenomena. These low-T NFL types of behavior observed in the C-p and rho measurements are most evident near the quantum critical concentration x approximate to 0.3 at which a T = 0 composition-induced transition from the AFM phase to the PM phase occurs.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2019. Vol. 100, no 9, article id 094447
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Physical Sciences
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URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-175698DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevB.100.094447ISI: 000488251800008OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-175698DiVA, id: diva2:1369988
Available from: 2019-11-13 Created: 2019-11-13 Last updated: 2019-11-13Bibliographically approved

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Smirnov, A.Smetana, VolodymyrMudring, Anja-VerenaJohnson, D. D.
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