CdEr2Se4: A New Erbium Spin Ice System in a Spinel Structure
we present a detailed study of the spinel CdEr2Se4 and show it to be a new instance of spin ice, the first one in an erbium material and the first one in a spinel. Definitive experimental evidence comes from the temperature dependence of the magnetic entropy, which shows an excellent agreement with the predicted behavior for a spin ice state. Crystal field calculations demonstrate that the change in the local environment from that of the titanates completely alters the rare-earth anisotropy giving rise, in the case of Er3+, to the required Ising anisotropy, when Er2Ti2O7 behaves as an XY antiferromagnet. This finding opens up the possibility of new exotic ground states within the CdR2Se4 and CdR2Se4 families.