Lattice instability and elastic dispersion due to the rattling motion in the type-I clathrate Ba 8Ga 16Sn 30

Isao Ishii, Yasuhiko Suetomi, Takahiro K. Fujita, Koichiro Suekuni, Tomoo Tanaka, Toshiro Takabatake, Takashi Suzuki, Marcos A. Avila

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To investigate the off-center rattling motion and its charge-carrier dependence in type-I clathrate compounds, we carried out ultrasonic measurements on type-I Ba 8Ga 16Sn 30 and a reference compound, K 8Ga 8Sn 38. We found elastic softening of C 44 originating from a lattice instability due to the off-center rattling motion of Ba atom in Ba 8Ga 16Sn 30. Elastic softening below 1 K suggests that the lattice instability remains at very low temperatures. We also found ultrasonic dispersion which has no mode selectivity. No-mode-selective ultrasonic dispersion in Ba 8Ga 16Sn 30 would be caused by a strong electron-phonon coupling. No charge-carrier dependence is observed between n-type and p-type Ba 8Ga 16Sn 30. The significant softening on the bulk modulus in Ba 8Ga 16Sn 30 contrasts to the continuous hardening in K 8Ga 8Sn 38, indicating the central role of the rattling motion in the softening.

Original languageEnglish
Article number085101
JournalPhysical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Feb 7 2012
Externally publishedYes


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics

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