Orphan spins in the S=5/2 antiferromagnet CaFe2O4

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


  • C. Stock
  • E. E. Rodriguez
  • N. Lee
  • F. Demmel
  • P. Fouquet
  • Ch Niedermayer
  • Y. Su
  • K. Nemkovski
  • M A. Green
  • J. A. Rodriguez-Rivera
  • J. W. Kim
  • L. Zhang
  • S. -W. Cheong

Colleges, School and Institutes


CaFe$_{2}$O$_{4}$ is an anisotropic $S={5\over 2}$ antiferromagnet with two competing $A$ ($\uparrow \uparrow \downarrow \downarrow$) and $B$ ($\uparrow \downarrow \uparrow \downarrow$) magnetic order parameters separated by static antiphase boundaries at low temperatures. Neutron diffraction and bulk susceptibility measurements, show that the spins near these boundaries are weakly correlated and a carry an uncompensated ferromagnetic moment that can be tuned with a magnetic field. Spectroscopic measurements find these spins are bound with excitation energies less than the bulk magnetic spin-waves and resemble the spectra from isolated spin-clusters. Localized bound orphaned spins separate the two competing magnetic order parameters in CaFe$_{2}$O$_{4}$.

Bibliographic note

(main text - 5 pages, 4 figures; supplementary information - 4 pages, 6 figures, to be published in Physical Review Letters). arXiv admin note: text overlap with arXiv:1606.04243


Original languageEnglish
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Issue number25
Publication statusPublished - 22 Dec 2017


  • cond-mat.mtrl-sci, cond-mat.str-el