Fundamental Properties of Functional Magnetic Materials

Abstract: Magnetic properties of powders, thin films and single crystals have been investigated using magnetometry methods. This thesis provides analysis and conclusions that are supported by the results obtained from spectroscopic and diffraction measurements as well as from theoretical calculations. First, the magnetic behavior of transition metal (TM) doped ZnO with respect to doping, growth conditions and post annealing has been studied. Our findings indicate that the magnetic behavior stems from small clusters or precipitates of the dopant, with ferromagnetic or antiferromagnetic interactions. At the lowest dopant concentrations, the estimated cluster sizes are too small for high resolution imaging. Still, the clusters may be sufficiently large to generate a finite spontaneous magnetization even at room temperature and could easily be misinterpreted as an intrinsic ferromagnetic state of the TM:ZnO compound. Second, influence of lattice strain on both magnetic moment and anisotropy has been investigated for epitaxial MnAs thin films grown on GaAs substrates. The obtained magnetic moments and anisotropy values are higher than for bulk MnAs. The enhanced values are caused by highly strained local areas that have a stronger dependence on the in-plane axis strain than out-of plane axis strain. Finally, spin glass behavior in Li-layered oxides, used for battery applications, and a double perovskite material has been investigated. For both Li(NiCoMn)O2 and (Sr,La)MnWO6, a mixed-valence of one of the transition metal ions creates competing ferromagnetic and antiferromagnetic interactions resulting in a low temperature three-dimensional (3D) spin glass state. Additionally, Li(NiCoMn)O2 with large cationic mixing exhibits a percolating ferrimagnetic spin order in the high temperature region and coexists with a two-dimensional (2D) frustrated spin state in the mid temperature region. This is one of the rare observations where a dimensional crossover from 2D to 3D spin frustration appears in a reentrant material.