|Phase Competition in Complex Oxides by Design |
Physics and Astronomy
|Craig Fennie, Plano Prize Winner, |
4:45 PM, Physics Lecture Hall
The rational design of new materials with emergent properties is a challenge today in materials physics. It begins with formulating a mechanism to control the interplay between diverse microscopic degrees of freedom in order to create targeted macroscopic phenomena and ends with the discovery or design of new material realizations. When combined with first-principles theoretical techniques, this approach provides an efficient strategy to survey the vast space of possible materials to target for synthesis. As an example, in this talk I will discuss recent work on designing materials rarely found in nature - multiferroic oxides in which a spontaneous magnetism not only coexists with but also is strongly coupled to a spontaneous electric polarization. By manipulating the competition between different ordered phases in real materials, I will show how in one case the interplay between spins and phonons can be exploited to produce a colossal magnetoelectric effect while in a second case, a polar lattice distortion can be designed to induce ferromagnetism.
Host: K. Rabe