Tricritical behavior of the two-dimensional intrinsically ferromagnetic semiconductor CrGeTe3
AbstractCrGeTe3 recently emerges as a new two-dimensional (2D) ferromagnetic semiconductor that is promising for spintronic device applications. Unlike CrSiTe3 whose magnetism can be understood using the 2D-Ising model, CrGeTe3 exhibits a smaller van der Waals gap and larger cleavage energy, which could lead to a transition of magnetic mechanism from 2D to 3D. To confirm this speculation, we investigate the critical behavior of CrGeTe3 around the second-order paramagnetic-ferromagnetic phase transition. We obtain the critical exponents estimated by several common experimental techniques including the modified Arrott plot, Kouvel-Fisher method, and critical isotherm analysis, which show that the magnetism of CrGeTe3 follows the tricritical mean-field model with the critical exponents β, γ, and δ of 0.240±0.006, 1.000±0.005, and 5.070±0.006, respectively, at the Curie temperature of 67.9 K. We therefore suggest that the magnetic phase transition from 2D to 3D for CrGeTe3 should locate near a tricritical point. Our experiment provides a direct demonstration of the applicability of the tricritical mean-field model to a 2D ferromagnetic semiconductor.