Evolution of (La 1 - y Pr y ) 0.7 Ca 0.3 MnO 3 crystal structure with A-cation size, temperature, and oxygen isotope substitution
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The atomic structure of (La 1 - y Pr y ) 0.7 Ca 0.3 MnO 3 compound with 0.5≤y≤1 has been systematically studied by neutron powder diffraction in the temperature range from 15 to 293 K. For composition with y = 0.75, the structural analysis was performed on two samples, one containing the natural mixture of oxygen isotopes and the other one 75% enriched by 18 O. The room temperature structural characteristics of the series, including cell volume, average Mn-O bond distance, and average Mn-O-Mn bond angle, are the linear functions of the <r A >. Temperature dependencies of these parameters are quite smooth, except for the point T = T FM , where a jump like changes occur. The isotope enriched samples have been found identical in crystal and magnetic structure down to the temperature of transition of the sample with 16 O into the metallic ferromagnetic phase. It confirms that different transport and magnetic properties of the samples with 16 O and 18 O at low temperature are driven by the different oxygen atoms dynamics solely. Temperature dependencies of the CO and AFM diffraction peak intensities and of the peak widths for compositions close to the metal-insulator boundary ( y≈ 0.75) indicate the macroscopically phase separated AFM-dielectric + FM-metallic state below T FM .
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