Spin-Peierls phases in pyrochlore antiferromagnets

Oleg Tchernyshyov, R. Moessner, Shivaji Lal Sondhi

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134 Scopus citations


In the highly frustrated pyrochlore magnet spins form a lattice of corner-sharing tetrahedra. We show that the tetrahedral "molecule" at the heart of this structure undergoes a Jahn-Teller distortion when lattice motion is coupled to the antiferromagnetism. We extend this analysis to the full pyrochlore lattice by means of Landau theory and argue that it should exhibit "spin-Peierls" phases with bond order but no spin order. We find a range of Néel phases, with collinear, coplanar, and noncoplanar order. While collinear Néel phases are easiest to generate microscopically, we also exhibit an interaction that gives rise to a coplanar state instead.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number064403
Pages (from-to)644031-6440312
Number of pages5796282
JournalPhysical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics
Issue number6
StatePublished - Aug 1 2002

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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