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Ultrafast Spin Density Wave Transition in Chromium Governed by Thermalized Electron Gas

MPS-Authors
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Nicholson,  Christopher
Physical Chemistry, Fritz Haber Institute, Max Planck Society;

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Wolf,  Martin
Physical Chemistry, Fritz Haber Institute, Max Planck Society;

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Fulltext (public)

PhysRevLett.117.136801.pdf
(Publisher version), 664KB

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Citation

Nicholson, C., Monney, C., Carley, R., Frietsch, B., Bowlan, J., Weinelt, M., et al. (2016). Ultrafast Spin Density Wave Transition in Chromium Governed by Thermalized Electron Gas. Physical Review Letters, 117(13): 136801. doi:10.1103/PhysRevLett.117.136801.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-002B-AE67-0
Abstract
The energy and momentum selectivity of time- and angle-resolved photoemission spectroscopy is exploited to address the ultrafast dynamics of the antiferromagnetic spin density wave (SDW) transition photoexcited in epitaxial thin films of chromium. We are able to quantitatively extract the evolution of the SDW order parameter Δ through the ultrafast phase transition and show that Δ is governed by the transient temperature of the thermalized electron gas, in a mean field description. The complete destruction of SDW order on a sub-100 fs time scale is observed, much faster than for conventional charge density wave materials. Our results reveal that equilibrium concepts for phase transitions such as the order parameter may be utilized even in the strongly nonadiabatic regime of ultrafast photoexcitation.