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Intrinsic magnetism in superconducting infinite-layer nickelates

Abstract

The discovery of superconductivity in Nd0.8Sr0.2NiO2 (ref. 1) introduced a new family of layered nickelate superconductors that has now been extended to include a range of strontium doping2,3, praseodymium or lanthanum in place of neodymium4,5,6,7, and the five-layer compound Nd6Ni5O12 (ref. 8). A number of studies have indicated that electron correlations are strong in these materials9,10,11,12,13,14,15, a feature that often leads to the emergence of magnetism. Here we report muon spin rotation/relaxation studies of a series of superconducting infinite-layer nickelates. Regardless of the rare earth ion or doping, we observe an intrinsic magnetic ground state arising from local moments on the nickel sublattice. The coexistence of magnetism—which is likely to be antiferromagnetic and short-range ordered—with superconductivity is reminiscent of some iron pnictides16 and heavy fermion compounds17, and qualitatively distinct from the doped cuprates18.

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Fig. 1: Features of the low-energy muon spin rotation experiment.
Fig. 2: ZF muon decay asymmetry and fit parameters.
Fig. 3: wTF asymmetry data versus temperature.
Fig. 4: Depth scans of the wTF asymmetry.

Data availability

All μSR data are available in the following permanent repositories: https://doi.org/10.16907/493c5efc-c6a8-45a7-a12f-27bfce87bd54 and https://doi.org/10.16907/d36143e7-a9d6-465b-8f6b-9af386bd0a8f. Histograms are also available together with the fitting software, on http://musruser.psi.ch. A run number directory is provided in section B of the Supplementary Information. Source data are provided with this paper.

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Acknowledgements

The work at Stanford/SLAC was supported by the US Department of Energy, Office of Basic Energy Sciences, Division of Materials Sciences and Engineering, under contract no. DE-AC02-76SF00515, and Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation’s Emergent Phenomena in Quantum Systems Initiative through grant no. GBMF9072 (synthesis equipment). J.F. was also supported by the Swiss National Science Foundation through Postdoc.Mobility P400P2199297. J.F., M.H. and J.-M.T. acknowledge support from the Swiss National Science Foundation through Division II 200020_179155 and the European Research Council under the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013)/ERC grant agreement no. 319286 (Q-MAC). D.L. acknowledges support from Hong Kong Research Grant Council (CityU 21301221) and National Natural Science Foundation of China (12174325). Part of this work is based on experiments performed at the Swiss Muon Source SμS, Paul Scherrer Institute, Villigen, Switzerland.

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Authors and Affiliations

Authors

Contributions

J.F. and D.L. prepared and characterised the samples with support from M.O., B.Y.W., K.L. and Y.L. J.F., M.H. and A.S. carried out the μSR measurements with support from Z.S. and T.P. J.F. and A.S. analysed the data. M.M.M. provided the model for the energy-dependent data. J.F., M.H., J.-M.T., H.Y.H. and A.S. wrote the manuscript with input from all authors.

Corresponding authors

Correspondence to Jennifer Fowlie, Harold Y. Hwang or Andreas Suter.

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Nature Physics thanks Peter Baker and the other, anonymous, reviewer(s) for their contribution to the peer review of this work.

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Supplementary information

Supplementary Information

Methods, Figs. 1–6, Tables I–VI and Discussion.

Source data

Source Data Fig. 1

Statistical source data

Source Data Fig. 2

Statistical source data

Source Data Fig. 3

Statistical source data

Source Data Fig. 4

Statistical source data

Source Data Supplementary Fig. 1

Source Data Supplementary Fig. 1

Source Data Supplementary Fig. 2

Statistical source data for Supplementary Fig. 2

Source Data Supplementary Fig. 3

Statistical source data for Supplementary Fig. 3

Source Data Supplementary Fig. 4

Statistical source data for Supplementary Fig. 4

Source Data Supplementary Fig. 5

Statistical source data for Supplementary Fig. 5

Source Data Supplementary Fig. 6

Statistical source data for Supplementary Fig. 6

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Fowlie, J., Hadjimichael, M., Martins, M.M. et al. Intrinsic magnetism in superconducting infinite-layer nickelates. Nat. Phys. (2022). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41567-022-01684-y

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