, Volume 65, Issue 1, pp 54-64
Date: 14 Nov 2012

Characterization of Magnetoelastic Coupling in Ferromagnetic Shape Memory Alloys Using Neutron Diffraction

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Ferromagnetic shape memory alloys (FSMA) are a new class of smart materials with unique properties and applications. The shape memory properties of FSMAs are due to a strong coupling between their elastic and magnetic properties. Understanding the physical origins of magnetoelastic coupling is therefore critical for future materials development and device design. To this end, a thorough study is required of the atomistic and microscopic structural arrangements and how these structural arrangements are related to the orientation of the magnetic moments. The different characterization techniques developed recently to probe these features are reviewed. A special emphasis is placed on in situ techniques such as neutron diffraction through which the microscopic origins of the collective material behavior could be ascertained.