Striped magnetic ground state on an ideal S = 2 Kagomé lattice

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International Union of Crystallography
We have used representational symmetry analysis of neutron powder diffraction data to determine the magnetic ground state of Fe4Si2Sn7O16. We recently reported a long-range antiferromagnetic (AFM) Néel ordering transition in this compound at TN = 3.0 K, based on magnetization measurements. [1] The only magnetic ions present are layers of high-spin Fe2+ (d6, S = 2) arranged on a perfect kagomé lattice (trigonal space group P-3m1). [2] Below TN = 3.0 K, the spins on 2/3 of these magnetic ions order into canted antiferromagnetic chains, separated by the remaining 1/3 which are geometrically frustrated and show no long-range ordered down to at least T = 0.1 K. Moessbauer spectroscopy shows that there is no static order on the latter 1/3 of the magnetic ions – i.e., they are in a liquid-like rather than a frozen state – down to at least 1.65 K. A heavily Mn-doped sample Fe1.45Mn2.55Si2Sn7O16 has the same ground state. Although the magnetic propagation vector k = (0, 1/2, 1/2) breaks hexagonal symmetry, we see no evidence for magnetostriction in the form of a lattice distortion within the resolution of our data. To the best of our knowledge, this type of magnetic order on a kagomé lattice has no precedent experimentally and has not been explicitly predicted theoretically. We will discuss the relationship between our experimental result and a number of theoretical models that predict symmetry breaking ground states for perfect kagomé lattices. © International Union of Crystallography
Neutron diffraction, Magnetism, Crystal lattices, Antiferromagnetism, Ground states, Spin
Ling, C. D., Allison, M., Schmid, S., Avdeev, M., Ryan, D., & Soehnel, T. (2017). Striped magnetic ground state on an ideal S = 2 Kagomé lattice. Presentation to to XXIV IUCr Congress, Hyderabad, India, 21-28 August 2017. In Acta Crystallographica Section A: Foundations and Advances, 73(a2), C1340. doi:10.1107/S2053273317082353