Unconventional Magnetization Processes and Thermal Runaway in Spin-Ice Dy2Ti2O7

Demian Gustavo Slobinsky, C. Castelnovo, Rodolfo Alberto Borzi, Alexandra Sarah Gibbs, Andrew Mackenzie, R. Moessner, Santiago Andres Grigera

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

51 Citations (Scopus)


We investigate the nonequilibrium behavior of the spin-ice Dy2Ti2O7 by studying its magnetization as a function of the field sweep rate. Below the enigmatic "freezing" temperature T-equil approximate to 600 mK, we find that even the slowest sweeps fail to yield the equilibrium magnetization curve and instead give an initially much flatter curve. For higher sweep rates, the magnetization develops sharp steps accompanied by similarly sharp peaks in the temperature of the sample. We ascribe the former behavior to the energy barriers encountered in the magnetization process, which proceeds via flipping of spins on filaments traced out by the field-driven motion of the gapped, long-range interacting magnetic monopole excitations. The peaks in temperature result from the released Zeeman energy not being carried away efficiently; the resulting heating triggers a chain reaction.

Original languageEnglish
Article number267205
Pages (from-to)-
Number of pages4
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Issue number26
Publication statusPublished - 30 Dec 2010


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