Temperature scaling of two-ion anisotropy in pure and mixed anisotropy systems

Richard F.L. Evans, Levente Rózsa, Sarah Jenkins, Unai Atxitia

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Magnetic anisotropy plays an essential role in information technology applications of magnetic materials, providing a means to retain the long-term stability of a magnetic state in the presence of thermal fluctuations. Anisotropy consists of a single-ion contribution stemming from the crystal structure and two-ion terms attributed to the exchange interactions between magnetic atoms. A lack of robust theory crucially limits the understanding of the temperature dependence of the anisotropy in pure two-ion and mixed single-ion and two-ion systems. Here, we use Green's function theory and atomistic Monte Carlo simulations to determine the temperature scaling of the effective anisotropy in ferromagnets in these pure and mixed cases, from saturated to vanishing magnetization. At low temperature, we find that the pure two-ion anisotropy scales with the reduced magnetization as k(m)∼m2.28, while the mixed scenario describes the diversity of the temperature dependence of the anisotropy observed in real materials. The deviation of the scaling exponent of the mixed anisotropy from previous mean-field results is ascribed to correlated thermal spin fluctuations, and its value determined here is expected to considerably contribute to the understanding and the control of the thermal properties of magnetic materials.

Original languageEnglish
Article number020412
JournalPhysical Review B
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 30 Jul 2020

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