Cooperative photoinduced metastable phase control in strained manganite films
Author(s)Zhang, Jingdi; Tan, Xuelian; Liu, Mengkun; Post, K. W.; Jin, Feng; Basov, D. N.; Wu, Wenbin; Averitt, R. D.; Teitelbaum, Samuel Welch; Nelson, Keith Adam; ... Show more Show less
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A major challenge in condensed-matter physics is active control of quantum phases. Dynamic control with pulsed electromagnetic fields can overcome energetic barriers, enabling access to transient or metastable states that are not thermally accessible. Here we demonstrate strain-engineered tuning of La[subscript 2/3]Ca[subscript 1/3]MnO[subscript 3] into an emergent charge-ordered insulating phase with extreme photo-susceptibility, where even a single optical pulse can initiate a transition to a long-lived metastable hidden metallic phase. Comprehensive single-shot pulsed excitation measurements demonstrate that the transition is cooperative and ultrafast, requiring a critical absorbed photon density to activate local charge excitations that mediate magnetic–lattice coupling that, in turn, stabilize the metallic phase. These results reveal that strain engineering can tune emergent functionality towards proximal macroscopic states to enable dynamic ultrafast optical phase switching and control.
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Chemistry
Nature Publishing Group
Zhang, Jingdi et al. “Cooperative Photoinduced Metastable Phase Control in Strained Manganite Films.” Nature Materials 15.9 (2016): 956–960.
Author's final manuscript