Temperature-dependent magnetic anisotropy in the layered magnetic semiconductors CrI3 and CrBr3

Nils Richter, Daniel Weber, Franziska Martin, Nirpendra Singh, Udo Schwingenschlögl, Bettina V. Lotsch, Mathias Kläui

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58 Scopus citations


Chromium trihalides are layered and exfoliable semiconductors and exhibit unusual magnetic properties with a surprising temperature dependence of the magnetization. By analyzing the evolution of the magnetocrystalline anisotropy with temperature in chromium iodide CrI3, we find it strongly changes from Ku=300±50kJ/m3 at 5K to Ku=43±7kJ/m3 at 60K, close to the Curie temperature. We draw a direct comparison to CrBr3, which serves as a reference, and where we find results consistent with literature. In particular, we show that the anisotropy change in the iodide compound is more than 3 times larger than in the bromide. We analyze this temperature dependence using a classical model, showing that the anisotropy constant scales with the magnetization at any given temperature below the Curie temperature, indicating that the temperature dependence can be explained by a dominant uniaxial anisotropy where this scaling results from local spin clusters having thermally induced magnetization directions that deviate from the overall magnetization.
Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalPhysical Review Materials
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 20 2018


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