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Phys Rev Lett. 2008 Aug 29;101(9):097204. Epub 2008 Aug 29.

Cycloidal spin order in the a-axis polarized ferroelectric phase of orthorhombic perovskite manganite.

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  • 1Department of Applied Physics, University of Tokyo, Tokyo 113-8656, Japan.


The ferroelectric state in an orthorhombic perovskite RMnO3 (R=Gd0.7Tb0.3) was proved by neutron scattering studies to show the cycloidal spin state with the ab-spiral plane and the spin-helicity dependent polarization vector along the a axis, sharing the microscopic origin (inverse Dzyaloshinskii-Moriya interaction) with the more widely observed P||c state (e.g., for R=Tb and Dy) with the bc-spiral plane. The magnetic-field induced polarization flop from P||c to P||a as well known for RMnO3 is thus assigned to the orthogonal flop of the spin spiral plane from bc to ab.

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