- AMER PHYSICAL SOC
We revisit the delocalized character of the 4f states of CeFe2 in the ferromagnetically ordered phase by x-ray magnetic circular dichroism (XMCD) in x-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS) with improved data quality using single crystals. Surprisingly, the CeM4,5 XMCD spectral shape changes significantly as a function of temperature and applied magnetic field, with no concomitant changes in the spectral shape of the Ce M-4,M-5 XAS as well as the Fe L-2,L-3 XAS and XMCD. This unusual behavior is characterized by the J = 7/2 states in a 4f(1) configuration mixed into the J = 5/2 ground state. Such extreme sensitivity of the Ce 4f states to the external perturbations can be related to the magnetic instability toward an antiferromagnetic phase in CeFe2. Our experimental data presented here provide valuable insights into the underlying physics in strongly hybridized ferromagnetic Ce compounds.
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