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Anisotropy in the Magnetic Interaction and Lattice-orbital Coupling of Single Crystal Ni3TeO6
A. Ghosh, K.-H. Chen, X.-S. Qiu, S. H. Hsieh, Y. C. Shao, C. H. Du, H. T. Wang, Y. Y. Chin, J. W. Chiou, S. C. Ray, H. M. Tsai, C. W. Pao, H. J. Lin, J. F. Lee, R. Sankar, F. C. Chou, and W. F. Pong*
This investigation reports on anisotropy in the magnetic interaction, lattice-orbital coupling and degree of phonon softening in single crystal Ni3TeO6 (NTO) using temperature- and polarization-dependent X-ray absorption spectroscopic techniques. The magnetic field-cooled and zero-field-cooled measurements and temperature-dependent Ni L3,2-edge X-ray magnetic circular dichroism spectra of NTO reveal a weak Ni-Ni ferromagnetic interaction close to ~60 K (TSO: temperature of the onset of spin ordering) with a net alignment of Ni spins (the uncompensated components of the Ni moments) along the crystallographic c-axis, which is absent from the ab-plane. Below the Néel temperature, TN~ 52 K, NTO is stable in the antiferromagnetic state with its spin axis parallel to the c-axis. The Ni L3,2-edge X-ray linear dichroism results indicate that above TSO, the Ni 3d eg electrons preferentially occupy the out-of-plane 3d3z2-r2 orbitals and switch to the in-plane 3dx2-y2 orbitals below TSO. The inherent distortion of the NiO6 octahedra and anisotropic nearest-neighbor Ni-O bond lengths between the c-axis and the ab-plane of NTO, followed by anomalous Debye-Waller factors and orbital-lattice in conjunction with spin-phonon couplings, stabilize the occupied out-of-plane (3d3z2-r2) and in-plane (3dx2-y2) Ni eg orbitals above and below TSO, respectively.