While ordinary materials are usually either magnetically or electrically ordered, a relatively new class of materials of so-called multiferroics has been discovered that exhibits magnetic and electrical (and eventually also mechanical) ordering simultaneously. The unique and fascinating feature of these systems is that both phenomena are coupled and that electric forces may be used to control the magnetic structure and vice versa.
Unfortunately, most systems that have been investigated so far exhibit these extraordinary properties only at low temperatures. In view of possible applications in information technology, sensor technology etc., it is, therefore, a crucial task to increase the temperature range of multiferroics. Since the exact mechanism of spin coupling with the movement of ions and the resulting electric dipole moment is still not fully understood, detailed experimental and theoretical studies are needed which require advanced techniques like high-resolution Raman spectroscopy with suitable laser sources [More]...
About the author:
Dr Holger Gibhardt studied physics in Heidelberg and Aachen (Germany) and graduated from Aachen in 1994 with the “diploma”. In 1998, he finished his PhD thesis at the Institute for Physical Chemistry in Göttingen. His research interests are structural and spectroscopic investigations in different condensed matter systems. Neutron scattering and Raman scattering have been the most important tools. Since, 1999, he is Senior Scientist at the Institute for Physical Chemistry in Göttingen.