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A Frustrated Honeycomb Magnet

Honeycomb Magnet

Magnetic frustration is a central theme in contemporary condensed-matter science, as it can lead to exotic quantum ground states such as spin liquid, spin ice and monopole phenomena. Compounds containing lanthanide ions have been attracting considerable interests because they often show anomalous magnetic properties that can be traced back to magnetic frustration. Among them, much attention has been paid to the magnetic materials with strong geometrical frustration, e.g., stacked triangular lattices, 2D and 3D Kagomé lattices, and corner- or edge-sharing 3D networks of tetrahedra in pyrochlores and spinels. Herein we have studied the family of SrR2O4 (R = rare earth) compounds which represent a new geometrically-frustrated magnetic system. They crystallize in the form of CaFe2O4-type structure within which magnetic lanthanide ions are linked in a network of triangles and hexagons with two inequivalent crystallographic sites. This results in the bent honeycombs, thereby producing a strong geometrical frustration. 

H. Li et al., RSC Adv. 4, 53602 (2014).