Role of commensurate and incommensurate low-energy excitations in the paramagnetic to hidden-order transition of URu2Si2

P. G. Niklowitz, S. R. Dunsiger, C. Pfleiderer, P. Link, A. Schneidewind, E. Faulhaber, M. Vojta, Y. K. Huang, J. A. Mydosh

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Abstract

We report low-energy inelastic neutron scattering data of the paramagnetic (PM) to hidden-order (HO) phase transition at T0=17.5K in URu2Si2. While confirming previous results for the HO and PM phases, our data reveal a pronounced wave-vector dependence of low-energy excitations across the phase transition. To analyze the energy scans we employ a damped harmonic oscillator model containing a fit parameter 1/Γ which is expected to diverge at a second-order phase transition. Counter to expectations the excitations at Q→ - 1≈(1.4,0,0) show an abrupt steplike suppression of 1/Γ below T0, whereas excitations at Q→ - 0=(1,0,0), associated with large-moment antiferromagnetism (LMAF) under pressure, show an enhancement and a pronounced peak of 1/Γ at T0. Therefore, at the critical HO temperature T0, LMAF fluctuations become nearly critical as well. This is the behavior expected of a "supervector" order parameter with nearly degenerate components for the HO and LMAF leading to nearly isotropic fluctuations in the combined order-parameter space.

Original languageEnglish
Article number115116
JournalPhysical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics
Volume92
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - 8 Sep 2015

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