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Separation of Kondo lattice coherence from crystal electric field in CeIn3 with Nd substitutions...

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Physical Review B
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The CemMnIn3m+2n (m=1,2;n=0,1) family has been one of the most studied families of heavy fermion compounds. This family has revealed many interesting low-temperature physics phenomena, like quantum critical points, heavy fermion superconductivity, and non-Fermi liquid behavior, when these materials are exposed to pressure, magnetic fields, and/or chemical substitution. Here we provide a thorough investigation of the Ce1−xNdxIn3 phase diagram through single crystal synthesis, x-ray diffraction, energy-dispersive spectroscopy, magnetic susceptibility, and electrical resistivity measurements. Previous electrical resistivity measurements on CeIn3 reveal a broad maximum, Tmax∼50 K, which has been associated with the Kondo lattice coherence crossover and/or the crystal electric field depopulation effect as the 4f electrons condense from the high-energy quartet down to the ground state doublet. Our findings show that in the most disordered substitution region, x=0.4–0.5, these features disjoin to reveal two distinct broad humps in electrical resistivity measurements. Magnetic susceptibility and electrical resistivity data on Ce1−xNdxIn3 also reveal the antiferromagnetic ordering competition between CeIn3 and NdIn3, where the TN of CeIn3 is linearly suppressed to a critical concentration of xNd∼0.6. This concentration is slightly lower than what was previously reported in nonmagnetically substituted Ce1−xLaxIn3. Our magnetic susceptibility measurements and subsequent simulations show that in the CeIn3 antiferromagnetic regime, xNd≤0.4, the Nd ions act as free paramagnets. The large magnitude of the associated paramagnetic response then masks the overlapping antiferromagnetic ordering signature of the Ce ions. Overall our study further sheds light on the underlying crystal electric field and Kondo lattice coherence interactions within the CemMnIn3m+2n family and could stimulate further studies of these systems via neutron diffraction or under applied pressure.