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Local site behavior of the 5d and 4f ions in the frustrated pyrochlore Ho2Os2O7

by Stuart A Calder, Zhiying Zhao, Mary Upton, Jiaqiang Yan
Publication Type
Journal Name
Physical Review B
Publication Date

The pyrochlore osmate Ho2Os2O7 is a candidate material for a fragile J=0 local singlet ground state; however little is known regarding the single-ion behavior of either the Os or Ho ions. To address this we present polarized neutron powder diffraction (PNPD) and RIXS measurements that separately probe the local site behavior of the Os and Ho ions. The PNPD results are dominated by Ho3+ scattering and the analysis reveals local site susceptibility behavior consistent with spin-ice materials. Complementary unpolarized neutron powder diffraction shows an ordered spin-ice ground state in an applied magnetic field. To isolate the Os4+ single-ion behavior we present resonant inelastic x-ray scattering (RIXS) measurements at the osmium L edge. Analysis of the RIXS spectra parametrizes the spin-orbit coupling (0.35 eV), Hund's coupling (0.27 eV), and trigonal site distortion (āˆ’0.17 eV). The results are considered within the context of a J=0 model and possible departures from this through structural distortions, excitonic interactions, and 5dāˆ’4f interactions between the Os ion and the surrounding Ho lattice. The experimental methodology employed highlights the complementary information available in rare-earth-based 5d pyrochlores from distinct neutron and x-ray scattering techniques that allow for the isolation and determination of the behavior of the different ions.