"Pressure Effects on the 4f Electronic Structure of Light Lanthanides"

W.-T. Chiu: D. R. Mortensen, M. J. Lipp, G. Resta, C. J. Jia, B. Moritz, T. P. Devereaux, S. Y. Savrasov, G. T. Seidler, and R. T. Scalettar; Physical Review Letters, 02/13/19.

Additional Authors: D. R. Mortensen, M. J. Lipp, G. Resta, C. J. Jia, B. Moritz, T. P. Devereaux, S. Y. Savrasov, G. T. Seidler, and R. T. Scalettar

Abstract:

Using the satellite structure of the Lγ1 line in nonresonant x-ray emission spectra, we probe the high-pressure evolution of the bare 4f signature of the early light lanthanides at ambient temperature. For Ce and Pr the satellite peak experiences a sudden reduction concurrent with their respective volume collapse (VC) transitions. These new experimental results are supported by calculations using state-of-the-art extended atomic structure codes for Ce and Pr, and also for Nd, which does not exhibit a VC. Our work suggests that changes to the 4f occupation are more consistently associated with evolution of the satellite than is the reduction of the 4f moment. Indeed, we show that in the case of Ce, mixing of a higher atomic angular momentum state, driven by the increased hybridization, acts to obscure the expected satellite reduction. These measurements emphasize the importance of a unified study of a full set of microscopic observables to obtain the most discerning test of the underlying, fundamental f-electron phenomena at high pressures.