Spin ice Thin Film: Surface Ordering, Emergent Square ice, and Strain Effects

Abstract : Motivated by recent realizations of Dy2Ti2O7 and Ho2Ti2O7 spin ice thin films, and more generally by the physics of confined gauge fields, we study a model spin ice thin film with surfaces perpendicular to the [001] cubic axis. The resulting open boundaries make half of the bonds on the interfaces inequivalent. By tuning the strength of these inequivalent " orphan " bonds, dipolar interactions induce a surface ordering equivalent to a two-dimensional crystallization of magnetic surface charges. This surface ordering may also be expected on the surfaces of bulk crystals. For ultrathin films made of one cubic unit cell, once the surfaces have ordered, a square ice phase is stabilized over a finite temperature window. The square ice degeneracy is lifted at lower temperature and the system orders in analogy with the well-known F-transition of the 6-vertex model. To conclude, we consider the addition of strain effects, a possible consequence of interface mismatches at the film-substrate interface. Our simulations qualitatively confirm that strain can lead to a smooth loss of Pauling entropy upon cooling, as observed in recent experiments on Dy2Ti2O7 films.
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Physical Review Letters, American Physical Society, 2017, 118, pp.207206. <https://journals.aps.org/prl/abstract/10.1103/PhysRevLett.118.207206>. <10.1103/PhysRevLett.118.207206>
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Contributeur : Ludovic Jaubert <>
Soumis le : dimanche 28 mai 2017 - 02:37:13
Dernière modification le : mercredi 21 juin 2017 - 00:59:13

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L.D.C. Jaubert, T. Lin, T.S. Opel, P.C.W. Holdsworth, M.J.P. Gingras. Spin ice Thin Film: Surface Ordering, Emergent Square ice, and Strain Effects. Physical Review Letters, American Physical Society, 2017, 118, pp.207206. <https://journals.aps.org/prl/abstract/10.1103/PhysRevLett.118.207206>. <10.1103/PhysRevLett.118.207206>. <hal-01528212>

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