5 May 2017

Anomalous Thermal Conductivity and Magnetic Torque Response in the Honeycomb Magnet α-RuCl3

We report on the unusual behavior of the in-plane thermal conductivity κ and torque τ response in the Kitaev-Heisenberg material α-RuCl3. κ shows a striking enhancement with linear growth beyond H = 7T, where magnetic order disappears, while τ for both of the in-plane symmetry directions shows an anomaly at the same field. The temperature and field dependence of κ are far more complex than conventional phonon and magnon contributions, and require us to invoke the presence of unconventional spin excitations whose properties are characteristic of a field-induced spin-liquid phase related to the enigmatic physics of the Kitaev model in an applied magnetic field.
Reference: I.A. Leahy et al, Physical Review Letters 118, 187203 (2017)

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