We describe the crystal structure and elementary magnetic properties of a previously unreported ternary intermetallic compound, Cr4PtGa17, which crystallizes in a rhombohedral unit cell in the noncentrosymmetric space group R3m. The crystal structure is closely related to those of XYZ half-Heusler compounds, where X, Y, and Z are reported to be single elements only, occupying three different face-centered-cubic sublattices. The new material, Cr4PtGa17, can be most straightforwardly illustrated by writing the formula as (PtGa2)(Cr4Ga14)Ga (X = PtGa2, Y = Cr4Ga14, Z = Ga); that is, the X and Y sites are occupied by clusters instead of single elements. The magnetic Cr occupies a breathing pyrochlore lattice. Ferromagnetic ordering is found below TC ∼61 K, by both neutron diffraction and magnetometer studies, with a small, saturated moment of ∼0.25 μB/Cr observed at 2 K, making Cr4PtGa17 the first ferromagnetically ordered material with a breathing pyrochlore lattice. A magnetoresistance of ∼140% was observed at 2 K. DFT calculations suggest that the material has a nearly half-metallic electronic structure. The new material, Cr4PtGa17, the first realization of both a half-Heusler-type structure and a breathing pyrochlore lattice, might pave a new way to achieve novel types of half-Heusler compounds.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Colloid and Surface Chemistry