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Durham University

Department of Physics

Staff profile

Publication details for Professor Tom Lancaster

Moeller, J.S., Ceresoli, D., Lancaster, T., Marzari, N. & Blundell, S.J. (2013). Quantum states of muons in fluorides. Physical Review B 87(12): 121108.

Author(s) from Durham


Muon-spin relaxation (μ + SR) is a sensitive probe of magnetism, but its utility can be severely limited by the lack of knowledge of the muon implantation site and the extent to which the muon perturbs its host. We demonstrate systematically that these problems can be addressed accurately using electronic-structure calculations. We show that diamagnetic muons introduce significant short-ranged distortions in ionic insulators that would lead to systematic errors on magnetic moments determined by μ + SR, and quantify these. The F-μ -F complex formed by muons in many fluorides can be understood as an exotic molecule-in-a-crystal defect with a zero-point energy larger than that of any naturally occurring triatomic molecule.