Novel phenomena in quantum magnets with strong spin-orbit coupling

  • Kaul, Ribhu (PI)

Grants and Contracts Details


This proposal is focused on theoretical investigations of novel phases of matter in strongly correlated materials. The specific set of materials under study are in a novel regime in which spin-orbit coupling is so large that it competes with other electronic energy scales (hopping integrals, Coulomb repulsion, magnetic exchange) in determining the fate of the ground state phase. Typically in theoretical solid state physics spin-orbit coupling is so weak that it can be treated perturbatively leading to small corrections. Recently, synthesis of new materials containing heavy atoms and the theoretical idea of topological insulators have emphasized the importance of studying systems in which spin-orbit coupling is so strong that it must be considered right at the outset. One family of materials that has become the poster child for this new parameter regime is the diverse set of newly synthesized Iridium-oxide crystals. The specific proposed projects are centered on a study of the ”Iridates” in a number of different contexts (thin films, heterostructures and various bulk forms). Interdisciplinary collaborations with various material, experimental and theoretical groups both at UK and ORNL are planned. The proposed research projects are a new direction for the PI, which he expects will become his group’s primary research focus in the coming years. He would like to use the funds from the Ralph E. Powe award to jump-start his entry into this exciting field.
Effective start/end date4/11/124/10/13


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