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Title: Robust spin correlations at high magnetic fields in the harmonic honeycomb iridates

Here, the complex antiferromagnetic orders observed in the honeycomb iridates are a double-edged sword in the search for a quantum spin-liquid: both attesting that the magnetic interactions provide many of the necessary ingredients, while simultaneously impeding access. Focus has naturally been drawn to the unusual magnetic orders that hint at the underlying spin correlations. However, the study of any particular broken symmetry state generally provides little clue about the possibility of other nearby ground states. Here we use magnetic fields approaching 100 Tesla to reveal the extent of the spin correlations in γ-lithium iridate. We find that a small component of field along the magnetic easy-axis melts long-range order, revealing a bistable, strongly correlated spin state. Far from the usual destruction of antiferromagnetism via spin polarization, the high-field state possesses only a small fraction of the total iridium moment, without evidence for long-range order up to the highest attainable magnetic fields.
 [1] ;  [2] ;  [3] ; ORCiD logo [4] ;  [4] ; ORCiD logo [3] ; ORCiD logo [5]
  1. Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States); Max-Planck-Institute for Chemical Physics of Solids, Dresden (Germany)
  2. Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States); Cornell Univ., Ithaca, NY (United States)
  3. Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
  4. Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States); Univ. of California, Berkeley, CA (United States)
  5. Florida State Univ., Tallahassee, FL (United States)
Publication Date:
Report Number(s):
Journal ID: ISSN 2041-1723
Grant/Contract Number:
AC52-06NA25396; AC02-05CH11231
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Nature Communications
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 8; Journal Issue: 1; Journal ID: ISSN 2041-1723
Nature Publishing Group
Research Org:
Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States); Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Basic Energy Sciences (BES) (SC-22)
Country of Publication:
United States
36 MATERIALS SCIENCE; 72 PHYSICS OF ELEMENTARY PARTICLES AND FIELDS; High Magnetic Field Science; Magnetic properties and materials
OSTI Identifier:
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1418309