These ordered, non-repeated structures have properties that may be useful, for example, in the context of designing solutions used to store information. The findings, supported by representatives of Tokyo University of Science, are recently presented in the following pages Materials today physics.
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As members of the research team confirmed, they were able to make quasicrystals change their magnetic properties, from completely zero to highly magnetic. All this without any major intervention involving changing electrons. Since the Japanese quasicrystal has been subjected to magnetic tests for the first time in history, the matter becomes even more interesting.
In addition to storing information, quasicrystals can also benefit humanity in a number of other ways. For example, magnetic refrigeration and well-understood electronics production technologies are widely used. Since quasicrystals are still relatively poorly understood, it turns out that scientists still have plenty of unexplored properties to offer.
Quasicrystals are solids in which the atoms are arranged in an apparently regular structure, although closer inspection reveals that they are not repeating at all
This particular type is composed of gold, gallium, and terbium and can take the form of an icosahedron or a rough cubic crystal. Due to non-compliance with the classical Heisenberg model of ferromagnetism, scientists expect such quasicrystals to contain magnetic nanopatterns in the form of vortices. For this reason, this term is sometimes used Rotary magnetism.
The ratio of electrons to atoms has a major influence on the properties of quasicrystals. When the index exceeds 1.9, we are talking about spin glass, in which the magnetic moments of the atoms interact randomly. At values of about 1.8, strong rotating ferromagnetism occurs, thanks to which the magnetic moments are aligned and the crystal becomes magnetized.
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However, when the electron-to-atom ratio drops below 1.7, the quasicrystal exhibits truly amazing behavior. What happens next? All of their magnetic moments cancel out, so a total magnetism of zero is measured. Although we are talking about results obtained in extreme conditions, at temperatures a few degrees above absolute zero, they still allow us to think about practical applications of quasicrystals. This brings to mind phenomena such as superconductivity, which is also difficult to achieve, but whose potential seems truly exhilarating.
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