Disorder-induced structural complexity in the barlowite family of S = 1/2 kagomé magnets

Katherine Tustain, Emma E. McCabe, Angel M. Arevalo-Lopez, Alexandra S. Gibbs, Stephen P. Thompson, Claire A. Murray, Clemens Ritter, Lucy Clark*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We present a comprehensive structural and magnetic characterization of the barlowite family of S = 1/2 kagomé magnets, Cu4(OH)6FX, where X = Cl, Br, or I. Through high-resolution synchrotron X-ray and neutron powder diffraction measurements, we reveal two sources of structural complexity within this family of materials, namely, compositional disorder of the halide species that occupy sites in between the kagomé layers and the positional disorder of the interlayer Cu2+ ions that persists well into the Pnma structural ground state. We demonstrate that understanding these inherent structural disorders is key as they correlate with the degree of partial order in the magnetic ground states of these quantum frustrated magnets.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9638–9651
Number of pages14
JournalChemistry of Materials
Issue number24
Early online date9 Dec 2021
Publication statusPublished - 28 Dec 2021


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