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Title: Frustration by design

Geometrical frustration is a condition that occurs when a material’s lattice geometry precludes minimizing the energy of all the interactions among pairs of neighbors simultaneously. Moreover, the simplest example is three antiferromagnetically coupled Ising spins, pointing up or down, on the corners of an equilateral triangle: It is also impossible to arrange the spins so that each pair is antiparallel. In more complex magnetic lattices, the frustrated state can arise from the combination of lattice geometry and the strength and sign of the interactions among the magnetic dipole moments.1 (See the article by Roderich Moessner and Art Ramirez, Physics Today, February 2006, page 24.) A wide variety of exotic and collective phenomena sometimes arises from the competing interactions. One prime example is spin liquids, materials in which the local atomic moments fluctuate down to the lowest accessible temperatures and never settle into a static ground-state configuration.
 [1] ;  [2] ;  [3]
  1. National Institute of Standards and Technology, Gaithersburg, MD (United States). Center for Nanoscale Science and Technology
  2. Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
  3. Univ. of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, IL (United States)
Publication Date:
Report Number(s):
Journal ID: ISSN 0031-9228; TRN: US1701811
Grant/Contract Number:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Physics Today
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 69; Journal Issue: 7; Journal ID: ISSN 0031-9228
American Institute of Physics (AIP)
Research Org:
Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Basic Energy Sciences (BES) (SC-22)
Country of Publication:
United States
36 MATERIALS SCIENCE; Material Science
OSTI Identifier: