Landau theory for the phase diagram of multiferroic Mn1-x(Fe,Zn,Mg)xWO4

Shlomi Matityahu*, Amnon Aharony, Ora Entin-Wohlman

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


We present a theoretical analysis of the temperature magnetic field concentration phase diagram of the multiferroic Mn1-xMxWO4 (M= Fe, Zn, Mg), which exhibits three ordered phases, with collinear and noncollinear incommensurate and with a commensurate magnetic order. The middle phase is also ferroelectric. The analysis uses a semiphenomenological Landau theory based on a Heisenberg Hamiltonian with a single-ion anisotropy. With a small number of adjustable parameters, the Landau theory gives an excellent fit to all three transition lines as well as the magnetic and the ferroelectric order parameters. The fit of the magnetic and ferroelectric order parameters is further improved by including the effect of fluctuations near the transitions. We demonstrate the highly frustrated nature of these materials and suggest a simple explanation for the dramatic effects of doping with different magnetic ions at the Mn sites. The model enables an examination of different sets of exchange couplings that were proposed by a number of groups. Small discrepancies are probably a consequence of small errors in the experimental magnetic parameters. In addition, using the Ginzburg criterion, we estimate the temperature range in which fluctuations of the order parameters become important.

Original languageEnglish
Article number174408
Number of pages13
JournalPhysical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics
Issue number17
StatePublished - 8 May 2012


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