Magnetization step in spatially distorted Heisenberg kagomé antiferromagnets

Ryui Kaneko*, Takahiro Misawa, Masatoshi Imada

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Motivated by a recent experiment on volborthite, a typical spin-1/2 antiferromagnet with a kagomé lattice structure, we study the magnetization process of a classical Heisenberg model on a spatially distorted kagome lattice using the Monte Carlo (MC) method. We find a distortion-induced magnetization step at low temperatures and low magnetic fields. The magnitude of this step is given by Δmz - | 1 - α|/3α at zero temperature, where α denotes the spatial anisotropy in exchange constants. The magnetization step signals a first-order transition at low temperatures, between two phases distinguished by distinct and well-developed short-range spin correlations, one characterized by spin alignment of a local 120° structure with a √3 × √3 period, and the other by a partially spin-flopped structure. We point out the relevance of our results to the unconventional steps observed in volborthite.

Original languageEnglish
Article number073708
Journaljournal of the physical society of japan
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2010 Jul
Externally publishedYes


  • Geometrical frustration
  • Heisenberg model
  • Kagomé lattice
  • Magnetization step
  • Volborthite

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


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