Incommensurate and multiple-q magnetic misfit order in the frustrated quantum spin ladder material antlerite Cu3SO4(OH)4

Research output: Contribution to journalResearch articleContributedpeer-review



In frustrated magnetic systems, the competition amongst interactions can introduce extremely high degeneracy and prevent the system from readily selecting a unique ground state. In such cases, the magnetic order is often exquisitely sensitive to the balance among the interactions, allowing tuning among novel magnetically ordered phases. In antlerite, Cu3SO4(OH)4, Cu2+ (S=1/2) quantum spins populate three-leg zigzag ladders in a highly frustrated quasi-one-dimensional structural motif. We demonstrate that at zero applied field, in addition to its recently reported low-temperature phase of coupled ferromagnetic and antiferromagnetic spin chains, this mineral hosts an incommensurate helical+cycloidal state, an idle-spin state, and a multiple-q phase which is the magnetic analog of misfit crystal structures. The antiferromagnetic order on the central leg is reentrant. The high tunability of the magnetism in antlerite makes it a particularly promising platform for pursuing exotic magnetic order.


Original languageEnglish
Article number174431
Number of pages17
JournalPhysical Review B
Issue number17
Publication statusPublished - 23 Nov 2022

External IDs

Scopus 85143198236
ORCID /0000-0002-2438-0672/work/142253080


Research priority areas of TU Dresden

Library keywords