Ferromagnetism Stabilized by Lattice Distortion at the Surface of the p-Wave Superconductor Sr2RuO4

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Science  04 Aug 2000:
Vol. 289, Issue 5480, pp. 746-748
DOI: 10.1126/science.289.5480.746

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Ferromagnetic (FM) spin fluctuations are believed to mediate the spin-triplet pairing for the p-wave superconductivity in Sr2RuO4. Our experiments show that, at the surface, a bulk soft-phonon mode freezes into a static lattice distortion associated with an in-plane rotation of the RuO6octahedron. First-principle calculations confirm this structure and predict a FM ground state at the surface. This coupling between structure and magnetism in the environment of broken symmetry at the surface allows a reconsideration of the coupling mechanism in the bulk.

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