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Tuning the multiferroic mechanisms of TbMnO3 by epitaxial strain

Type of publication Peer-reviewed
Publikationsform Original article (peer-reviewed)
Author Kenta Shimamoto, Saumya Mukherjee, Sebastian Manz, Jonathan S. White, Morgan Trassin, Michel Kenzelmann, Laurent Chapon, Thomas Lippert, Manfred Fiebig, Christof W. Schneider, Christof Niedermayer,
Project Structural and magneto-electric properties of strained REMnO3 films
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Original article (peer-reviewed)

Journal Scientific Reports
Volume (Issue) 7
Page(s) 44753-1 - 44753-9
Title of proceedings Scientific Reports
DOI 10.1038/srep44753

Open Access

Type of Open Access Publisher (Gold Open Access)


A current challenge in the field of magnetoelectric multiferroics is to identify systems that allow a controlled tuning of states displaying distinct magnetoelectric responses. Here we show that the multiferroic ground state of the archetypal multiferroic TbMnO3 is dramatically modified by epitaxial strain. Neutron diffraction reveals that in highly strained films the magnetic order changes from the bulk-like incommensurate bc-cycloidal structure to commensurate magnetic order. Concomitant with the modification of the magnetic ground state, optical second-harmonic generation (SHG) and electric measurements show an enormous increase of the ferroelectric polarization, and a change in its direction from along the c- to the a-axis. Our results suggest that the drastic change of multiferroic properties results from a switch of the spin-current magnetoelectric coupling in bulk TbMnO3 to symmetric magnetostriction in epitaxially-strained TbMnO3. These findings experimentally demonstrate that epitaxial strain can be used to control single-phase spin-driven multiferroic states.