Magnetothermal transport in spin-ladder systems

Ofer Shlagman, Efrat Shimshoni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We study a theoretical model for the magnetothermal conductivity of a spin-12 ladder with low exchange coupling (J Θ D) subject to a strong magnetic field B. Our theory for the thermal transport accounts for the contribution of spinons coupled to lattice phonon modes in the one-dimensional lattice. We employ a mapping of the ladder Hamiltonian onto an XXZ spin chain in a weaker effective field B eff=B-B 0, where B 0=B c1+B c22 corresponds to half-filling of the spinon band. This provides a low-energy theory for the spinon excitations and their coupling to the phonons. The coupling of acoustic longitudinal phonons to spinons gives rise to hybridization of spinons and phonons, and provides an enhanced B-dependent scattering of phonons on spinons. Using a memory-matrix approach, we show that the interplay between several scattering mechanisms, namely, umklapp, disorder, and phonon-spinon collisions, dominates the relaxation of heat current. This yields magnetothermal effects that are qualitatively consistent with the thermal conductivity measurements in the spin-12 ladder compound Br 4( C5H 12N)2 (BPCB).

Original languageEnglish
Article number075442
JournalPhysical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics
Issue number7
StatePublished - 20 Aug 2012

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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