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  1. Abstract

    In magnetoelectric materials, magnetic and dielectric/ferroelectric properties couple to each other. This coupling could enable lower power consumption and new functionalities in devices such as sensors, memories and transducers, since voltages instead of electric currents are sensing and controlling the magnetic state. We explore a different approach to magnetoelectric coupling in which we use the magnetic spin state instead of the more traditional ferro or antiferromagnetic order to couple to electric properties. In our molecular compound, magnetic field induces a spin crossover from the S = 1 to the S = 2 state of Mn3+, which in turn generates molecular distortions and electric dipoles. These dipoles couple to the magnetic easy axis, and form different polar, antipolar and paraelectric phases vs magnetic field and temperature. Spin crossover compounds are a large class of materials where the spin state can modify the structure, and here we demonstrate that this is a route to magnetoelectric coupling.

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