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Magnetic Field Control of Cycloidal Domains and Electric Polarization in Multiferroic BiFeO3

Type of publication Peer-reviewed
Publikationsform Original article (peer-reviewed)
Author Bordács S., Farkas D. G., White J. S., Cubitt R., DeBeer-Schmitt L., Ito T., Kézsmárki I.,
Project Exploration of emerging magnetoelectric coupling effects in new materials
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Original article (peer-reviewed)

Journal Physical Review Letters
Volume (Issue) 120(14)
Page(s) 147203 - 147203
Title of proceedings Physical Review Letters
DOI 10.1103/physrevlett.120.147203


The magnetic field induced rearrangement of the cycloidal spin structure in ferroelectric monodomain single crystals of the room-temperature multiferroic BiFeO3 is studied using small-angle neutron scattering. The cycloid propagation vectors are observed to rotate when magnetic fields applied perpendicular to the rhombohedral (polar) axis exceed a pinning threshold value of ∼5  T. In light of these experimental results, a phenomenological model is proposed that captures the rearrangement of the cycloidal domains, and we revisit the microscopic origin of the magnetoelectric effect. A new coupling between the magnetic anisotropy and the polarization is proposed that explains the recently discovered magnetoelectric polarization perpendicular to the rhombohedral axis.