Spin Freezing in The Frustrated Disordered Quantum Magnet Ba$_{3}$(Mn$_{1-x}$V$_{x}$)$_{2}$O$_{8}$ Academic Article uri icon

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  • Ba$_3$Mn$_2$O$_8$ is a geometrically frustrated spin dimer compound. We investigate the effect of site disorder on the zero field phase diagram of this material by considering the solid solution Ba$_{3}$(Mn$_{1-x}$V$_{x}$)$_{2}$O$_{8}$, where nonmagnetic V$^{5+}$ ions partially substitute magnetic Mn$^{5+}$ ions. This substitution results in unpaired $S=1$ moments for half-substituted dimers, which are ungapped and therefore susceptible to types of magnetic order not present in the parent compound. AC susceptibility measurements of compositions between $x=0.046$ and $x=0.84$ show a sharp frequency- and composition-dependent kink at temperatures below 210mK, suggesting that unpaired spins form a spin glass. The case for a glassy state is made clearer by the absence of any sharp features in the specific heat. However, Ba$_{3}$(Mn$_{1-x}$V$_{x}$)$_{2}$O$_{8}$ is not a paradigmatic spin glass. Whereas both the freezing temperature and the Weiss temperature (determined from susceptibility above 1K) vary strongly as a function of composition, the heat capacity per unpaired spin is found to be insensitive (above the glass transition) to the density of unpaired spins for the broad regime $0.18\leq x \leq 0.84$. This surprising result is consistent with a scenario in which nearest-neighbor unpaired spins form local, possibly fluctuating, spin-singlets prior to the eventual spin freezing. The spin glass state is only found for temperatures below the energy scale of single-ion anisotropy, suggestive this plays a significant role in determining the eventual ground state. Possible ground states in the "dilute" limit ($x < 0.04$ and $x > 0.9$) are also discussed.


  • Hristov, AT
  • Shapiro, MC
  • Silverstein, Harlyn J
  • Lee, Minseong
  • Choi, Eun Sang
  • Rodenbach, L
  • Park, Ju-Hyun
  • Munsie, TJS
  • Luke, Graeme
  • Civale, L
  • Fisher, IR