Location : Grenoble, France
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Our team investigates the novel magnetic phases which emerge in the presence of magnetic frustration. Recently, we showed evidences for magnetic fragmentation in a pyrochlore oxide material Nd2Zr2O7. This state of matter is very peculiar since the magnetic moments fragment into an antiferromagnetic ordered part and a fluctuating one characterized by ferromagnetic correlations (similar to what is observed in the spin ice state).
This PhD aims at understanding the origin of the fragmentation in this system, and especially the role of quantum effects which induce peculiar dynamics. The thesis work will take place in France both at the Institut Néel (Grenoble) and at the LLB (Saclay). The student will benefit from the facilities of these two laboratories: unique very low temperature magnetic measurements at the Institut Néel and strong expertise in neutron scattering techniques (diffraction and inelastic neutron scattering) at the LLB. The complementarity between macroscopic and neutron scattering measurements is indeed one of the key points to determine the quantum Hamiltonian of frustrated systems and beyond, understand the microscopic mechanisms of magnetic fragmentation, along with the nature of the spin dynamics that emerge from this recently discovered ground state.