Quantum order-by-disorder near criticality and the secret of partial order in MnSi

Frank Kruger, Una Karahasanovic, Andrew G. Green

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Citations (Scopus)


The vicinity of quantum phase transitions has proven fertile ground in the search for new quantum phases. We propose a physically motivated and unifying description of phase reconstruction near metallic quantum-critical points using the idea of quantum order-by-disorder. Certain deformations of the Fermi surface associated with the onset of competing order enhance the phase space available for low-energy, particle-hole fluctuations and self-consistently lower the free energy. Applying the notion of quantum order-by-disorder to the itinerant helimagnet MnSi, we show that near to the quantum critical point, fluctuations lead to an increase of the spiral ordering wave vector and a reorientation away from the lattice favored directions. The magnetic ordering pattern in this fluctuation-driven phase is found to be in excellent agreement with the neutron scattering data in the partially ordered phase of MnSi.
Original languageEnglish
Article number067003
Number of pages5
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 8 Feb 2012


  • cond-mat.str-el


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