Anti-symmetric Compton scattering in LiNiPO4: Towards a direct probe of the magneto-electric multipole moment
- Journal Article
Rights / licenseCreative Commons Attribution 4.0 International
Background: Magnetoelectric multipoles, which break both space-inversion and time-reversal symmetries, play an important role in the magnetoelectric response of a material. Motivated by uncovering the underlying fundamental physics of the magnetoelectric multipoles and the possible technological applications of magnetoelectric materials, understanding as well as detecting such magnetoelectric multipoles has become an active area of research in condensed matter physics. Here we employ the well-established Compton scattering effect as a possible probe for the magnetoelectric toroidal moments in LiNiPO4. Methods: We employ combined theoretical and experimental techniques to compute as well as detect the antisymmetric Compton profile in LiNiPO4. For the theoretical investigation we use density functional theory to compute the anti-symmetric part of the Compton profile for the magnetic and structural ground state of LiNiPO4. For the experimental verification, we measure the Compton signals for a single magnetoelectric domain sample of LiNiPO4, and then again for the same sample with its magnetoelectric domain reversed. We then take the difference between these two measured signals to extract the antisymmetric Compton profile in LiNiPO4. Results: Our theoretical calculations indicate an antisymmetric Compton profile in the direction of the ty toroidal moment in momentum space, with the computed antisymmetric profile around four orders of magnitude smaller than the total profile. The difference signal that we measure is consistent with the computed profile, but of the same order of magnitude as the statistical errors and systematic uncertainties of the experiment. Conclusions: While the weak difference signal in the measurements prevents an unambiguous determination of the antisymmetric Compton profile in LiNiPO4, our results motivate further theoretical work to understand the factors that influence the size of the antisymmetric Compton profile, and to identify materials exhibiting larger effects. Show more
Journal / seriesOpen Research Europe
Pages / Article No.
Organisational unit03903 - Spaldin, Nicola A. / Spaldin, Nicola A.
810451 - Hidden, entangled and resonating orders/HERO (EC)
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