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Journal Article

Site-specific electronic and magnetic excitations of the skyrmion material Cu2OSeO3


Schmidt,  Marcus
Marcus Schmidt, Chemical Metal Science, Max Planck Institute for Chemical Physics of Solids, Max Planck Society;

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Gu, Y., Wang, Y., Lin, J., Pelliciari, J., Li, J., Han, M.-G., et al. (2022). Site-specific electronic and magnetic excitations of the skyrmion material Cu2OSeO3. Communications Physics, 5(1): 156, pp. 1-7. doi:10.1038/s42005-022-00934-y.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-000A-B7A1-1
The manifestation of skyrmions in the Mott-insulator Cu2OSeO3 originates from a delicate balance between magnetic and electronic energy scales. As a result of these intertwined couplings, the two symmetry-inequivalent magnetic ions, Cu-I and Cu-II, bond into a spin S = 1 entangled tetrahedron. However, conceptualizing the unconventional properties of this material and the energy of the competing interactions is a challenging task due to the complexity of this system. Here we combine X-ray Absorption Spectroscopy and Resonant Inelastic X-ray Scattering to uncover the electronic and magnetic excitations of Cu2OSeO3 with site-specificity. We quantify the energies of the 3d crystal-field splitting for both Cu-I and Cu-II, fundamental for optimizing model Hamiltonians. Additionally, we unveil a site-specific magnetic mode, indicating that individual spin character is preserved within the entangled-tetrahedron picture. Our results thus provide experimental constraints for validating theories that describe the interactions of Cu2OSeO3, highlighting the site-selective capabilities of resonant spectroscopies.
The complex interactions in spin spiral systems play an important role for the emergence of multiferroicity and topological magnetic order. Here, the authors investigate the magnetism associated with the two inequivalent Cu positions in the model system Cu2OSeO3, observing site-specific electronic structure and associated magnetic excitations.