Research Papers in Physics and Astronomy

 

Date of this Version

October 2000

Comments

Published by American Physical Society. Phys. Rev. B 62, 8969-8975 (2000). http://prb.aps.org. Copyright © 2000 American Physical Society. Permission to use.

Abstract

The metastable Ni3C phase has been produced by mechanically alloying Ni and C. Ni3C particles of diameter 10 nm are produced after 90 h of mechanical alloying with no evidence of crystalline Ni in x ray or electron diffraction. Linear muffin-tin orbital band-structure calculations show that Ni3C is not expected to be ferromagnetic due to strong Ni-C hybridization in the ordered alloy; however, the introduction of even small amounts of disorder produces locally Ni-rich regions that can sustain magnetism. Mechanically alloyed Ni3C is ferromagnetic, with a room-temperature coercivity of 70 Oe and a magnetization of 0.8 emu/g at 5.5 T, although the hysteresis loop is not saturated. The theoretical prediction that interacting locally nickel-rich regions may be responsible for ferromagnetic behavior is supported by the observation of magnetically glassy behavior at low magnetic fields.



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