What is it about?

Certain antiferromagnets may demonstrate unusual physical phenomena, due to their symmetry-breaking magnetic structure. This particular antiferromagnet, Mn3NiN, shows the anomalous Nernst effect, whereby a thermal gradient is converted into an electric voltage. Unusually, this material shows a voltage signal in two perpendicular directions simultaneously. Using a scanning laser to create a local heat gradient, we measure these two voltages, and find regions that are associated with the magnetic domains in the sample.

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Why is it important?

From a fundamental physics perspective, this work elegantly reveals the direct link between the intrinsic anomalous Nernst effect and the underlying magnetic symmetries present in the material. From a practical perspective, identifying and manipulating antiferromagnetic domains is a key goal for next-generation computing devices.

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This page is a summary of: Identifying the octupole antiferromagnetic domain orientation in Mn3NiN by scanning anomalous Nernst effect microscopy, Applied Physics Letters, June 2022, American Institute of Physics, DOI: 10.1063/5.0091257.
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