Quantum phase transitions in Ba(1−x)CaxFe12O19 (0≤x≤0.10)
AbstractThe ground state of BaFe12O19 (BFO) is controversial as three different quantum states, namely, quantum paraelectric, frustrated antiferroelectric, and quantum electric dipole liquid (QEDL), have been proposed. We have investigated the quantum critical behavior of BFO as a function of chemical pressure (a nonthermal variable) generated by smaller isovalent ion Ca2+ at the Ba2+ site. Analysis of synchrotron x-ray diffraction data confirms that Ca2+ substitution generates positive chemical pressure. Our dielectric measurements reveal that Ca2+ substitution drives BFO away from its quantum critical point (QCP) and stabilizes a quantum electric dipolar glass state whose dielectric peak temperature (Tc) increases with increasing Ca2+ content as Tc∼(x−xc)1/2, a canonical signature of quantum phase transitions. Our dielectric measurements reveal that pure BFO is slightly away from its QCP with a Tc of 2.91 K. Specific-heat measurements reveal excess specific heat of non-Debye and nonmagnetic origin with linear temperature dependence below Tc which could be due to the QEDL state of BFO.