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Nanomaterials 2018, 8(4), 241;

Structure and Magnetism of Mn5Ge3 Nanoparticles

Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Delaware, Newark, DE 19711, USA
Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Nebraska, Lincoln, NE 68588, USA
Nebraska Center for Materials and Nanoscience, University of Nebraska, Lincoln, NE 68588, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 10 March 2018 / Revised: 10 April 2018 / Accepted: 12 April 2018 / Published: 15 April 2018
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In this work, we investigated the magnetic and structural properties of isolated Mn5Ge3 nanoparticles prepared by the cluster-beam deposition technique. Particles with sizes between 7.2 and 12.6 nm were produced by varying the argon pressure and power in the cluster gun. X-ray diffraction (XRD)and selected area diffraction (SAD) measurements show that the nanoparticles crystallize in the hexagonal Mn5Si3-type crystal structure, which is also the structure of bulk Mn5Ge3. The temperature dependence of the magnetization shows that the as-made particles are ferromagnetic at room temperature and have slightly different Curie temperatures. Hysteresis-loop measurements show that the saturation magnetization of the nanoparticles increases significantly with particle size, varying from 31 kA/m to 172 kA/m when the particle size increases from 7.2 to 12.6 nm. The magnetocrystalline anisotropy constant K at 50 K, determined by fitting the high-field magnetization data to the law of approach to saturation, also increases with particle size, from 0.4 × 105 J/m3 to 2.9 × 105 J/m3 for the respective sizes. This trend is mirrored by the coercivity at 50 K, which increases from 0.04 T to 0.13 T. A possible explanation for the magnetization trend is a radial Ge concentration gradient. View Full-Text
Keywords: magnetic nanoparticles; cluster deposition; magnetization magnetic nanoparticles; cluster deposition; magnetization

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Tosun, O.; Salehi-Fashami, M.; Balasubramanian, B.; Skomski, R.; Sellmyer, D.J.; Hadjipanayis, G.C. Structure and Magnetism of Mn5Ge3 Nanoparticles. Nanomaterials 2018, 8, 241.

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