Electrostatically driven charge-ordering in Fe2OBO3

J P Attfield, A M T Bell, L M Rodriguez-Martinez, J M Greneche, R J Cernik, J F Clarke, D A Perkins

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    Charge-ordering is an important phenomenon in conducting metal oxides: it leads to metal-insulator transitions in manganite perovskites (which show 'colossal' magnetoresistances), and the Verwey transition in magnetite (in which the material becomes insulating at low temps. when the conduction electrons freeze into a regular array). Charge-ordered 'stripes' are found in some manganites and copper oxide superconductors; in the latter case, dynamic fluctuations of the stripes have been proposed as a mechanism of high-temp. supercond. But an important unresolved issue is whether the charge-ordering in oxides is driven by electrostatic repulsions between the charges (Wigner crystn.), or by the strains arising from electron-lattice interactions (such as Jahn-Teller distortions) involving different localized electronic states. Here we report measurements on iron oxoborate, Fe2OBO3, that support the electrostatic repulsion charge-ordering mechanism: the system adopts a charge-ordered state below 317 K, in which Fe2+ and Fe3+ ions are equally distributed over structurally distinct Fe sites. In contrast, the isostructural manganese oxoborate, Mn2OBO3, has been previously shown to undergo charge-ordering through Jahn-Teller distortions. We therefore conclude that both mechanisms occur within the same structural arrangement. [on SciFinder(R)]
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)655-658
    Number of pages4
    JournalNature (London)
    Issue number6712
    Publication statusPublished - 1998


    • Crystal structure-property relationship
    • Electric charge
    • Electric conductivity
    • Electrostatic force
    • Mossbauer effect
    • Order-disorder transition (electrostatically driven charge-ordering in Fe2OBO3)
    • Force (repulsive
    • electrostatically driven charge-ordering in Fe2OBO3)
    • charge ordering iron oxoborate electrostatic repulsion


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