Strain-tunable metamagnetic critical endpoint in Mott insulating rare-earth titanates

Zhentao Wang, Dominique M Gautreau, Turan Birol, Rafael M Fernandes

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6 Scopus citations


Rare-earth titanates are Mott insulators whose magnetic ground state - antiferromagnetic (AFM) or ferromagnetic (FM) - can be tuned by the radius of the rare-earth element. Here, we combine phenomenology and first-principles calculations to shed light on the generic magnetic phase diagram of a chemically substituted titanate on the rare-earth site that interpolates between an AFM and a FM state. Octahedral rotations present in these perovskites cause the AFM order to acquire a small FM component - and vice-versa - removing any multicritical point from the phase diagram. However, for a wide parameter range, a first-order metamagnetic transition line terminating at a critical endpoint survives inside the magnetically ordered phase. Like the liquid-gas transition, a Widom line emerges from the endpoint, characterized by enhanced fluctuations. In contrast to metallic FMs, this metamagnetic transition involves two symmetry-equivalent and insulating canted spin states. Moreover, instead of a magnetic field, we show that uniaxial strain can be used to tune this transition to zero temperature, inducing a quantum critical endpoint.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number144404
JournalPhysical Review B
Issue number14
StatePublished - Apr 1 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank A. Chubukov, M. Greven, S. Hameed, A. Najev, and D. Pelc for fruitful discussions. This paper was funded by the U.S. Department of Energy through the University of Minnesota Center for Quantum Materials, under Grant No. DE-SC-0016371.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 American Physical Society.


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