Europhys. Lett.
Volume 47, Number 3, August 1999
Page(s) 352 - 357
Section Condensed matter: electronic structure, electrical, magnetic and optical properties
Published online 01 September 2002
DOI: 10.1209/epl/i1999-00396-3

Europhys. Lett, 47 (3), pp. 352-357 (1999)

The magnetic structure of orthorhombic ErNi2B2C

C. Detlefs 1, D. L. Abernathy 1, G. Grübel 1 and P. C. Canfield 2

1 European Synchrotron Radiation Facility
Boîte Postale 220, 38043 Grenoble Cedex, France
2 Ames Laboratory and Department of Physics and Astronomy
Iowa State University - Ames, IA 50011, USA

(received 16 March 1999; accepted in final form 27 May 1999)

PACS. 74.25Ha - Magnetic properties.
PACS. 75.25+z - Spin arrangements in magnetically ordered materials (including neutron and spin-polarized electron studies, synchrotron-source X-ray scattering, etc.).
PACS. 61.10Eq - X-ray scattering (including small-angle scattering).


In a recent X-ray scattering experiment, it was demonstrated that the magnetic ordering transition of ErNi2B2C at 6.0 K is accompanied by a structural distortion, which lowers the crystal symmetry from tetragonal to orthorhombic. In previous neutron magnetic scattering experiments, this lowering of the crystal lattice symmetry was not resolved. Since the magnetic modulations along the a and b crystallographic directions are equivalent in tetragonal, but not in orthorhombic systems, the magnetic structure determinations based on neutron data remained incomplete. We have performed a high-resolution non-resonant magnetic X-ray scattering experiment on a single crystal of ErNi2B2C to determine the magnetic structure. The magnetic modulation wave vector is (0.5537, 0, 0) and lies along the long side of the orthorhombic basal plane.


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