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DE-SC0021188: Neutron Spin-Orbit Scattering in Non-centrosymmetric Magnets

Award Status: Active
  • Institution: New Jersey Institute of Technology, Newark, NJ
  • DUNS: 075162990
  • Most Recent Award Date: 05/24/2024
  • Number of Support Periods: 4
  • PM: Fitzsimmons, Michael
  • Current Budget Period: 08/01/2024 - 07/31/2025
  • Current Project Period: 08/01/2024 - 07/31/2027
  • PI: Yang, Junjie
  • Supplement Budget Period: N/A

Public Abstract

The functionality of materials is primarily governed by five fundamental symmetries: space inversion, time reversal, mirror, rotational, and translational symmetry. Broken symmetry often accompanies the emergence of new physical phenomena. Non-centrosymmetric magnets, lacking space inversion and time-reversal symmetries, exhibit exotic properties such as topological magnetic ground states, making them an intriguing area of research. It's noteworthy that non-centrosymmetric magnets can induce unique phenomena in external probes. Neutrons, with their dual wave-particle nature and spin properties, serve as excellent quantum probes and can interact with non-centrosymmetric magnets, resulting in various unconventional spin-orbit scattering processes, including nuclear-spin-orbit and magnetic-spin-orbit scattering. These neutron spin-orbit scattering phenomena not only pique interest but also aid in uncovering the exotic properties of non-centrosymmetric magnets. For instance, they reveal intricate relationships between crystal chirality, magnetic chirality, and dynamical spin-spin correlations in non-centrosymmetric magnets.
    Recently, research on non-centrosymmetric magnets primarily focuses on their intrinsic physical properties. In contrast, neutron spin-orbit scattering phenomena remain relatively unexplored and not fully understood. One challenge is the need for high-quality single-domain crystals to observe neutron spin-orbit scattering. Our team at NJIT addresses this challenge by combining advanced crystal growth techniques with state-of-the-art polarized neutron scattering to grow high-quality single-domain crystals and study various neutron spin-orbit scattering phenomena in non-centrosymmetric magnets. The results will enrich our understanding of neutron spin-orbit scattering phenomena as well as the physical properties of non-centrosymmetric magnets which are also quantum materials. Thus, this project also promises valuable insights into non-centrosymmetric quantum materials, including novel perspectives on crystal growth. The applicability of neutron spin-orbit scattering extends beyond our research, offering insights into diverse non-centrosymmetric quantum materials. This funding will also enable us to integrate cutting-edge research with training the next generation of scientists and engineers in quantum science.

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