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Title: Quadrupolar magnetic excitations in an isotropic spin-1 antiferromagnet
Abstract The microscopic origins of emergent behaviours in condensed matter systems are encoded in their excitations. In ordinary magnetic materials, single spin-flips give rise to collective dipolar magnetic excitations called magnons. Likewise, multiple spin-flips can give rise to multipolar magnetic excitations in magnetic materials with spin S ≥ 1. Unfortunately, since most experimental probes are governed by dipolar selection rules, collective multipolar excitations have generally remained elusive. For instance, only dipolar magnetic excitations have been observed in isotropic S = 1 Haldane spin systems. Here, we unveil a hidden quadrupolar constituent of the spin dynamics in antiferromagnetic S = 1 Haldane chain material Y 2 BaNiO 5 using Ni L 3 -edge resonant inelastic x-ray scattering. Our results demonstrate that pure quadrupolar magnetic excitations can be probed without direct interactions with dipolar excitations or anisotropic perturbations. Originating from on-site double spin-flip processes, the quadrupolar magnetic excitations in Y 2 BaNiO 5 show a remarkable dual nature of collective dispersion. While one component propagates as non-interacting entities, the other behaves as a bound quadrupolar magnetic wave. This result highlights the rich and largely unexplored physics of higher-order magnetic excitations.
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Nature Communications
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National Science Foundation
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