The nature of the hidden-order (HO) state in URu2Si2 remains one of the major unsolved issues in heavy-fermion physics. Recently, torque magnetometry, x-ray diffraction, and elastoresistivity data have suggested that the HO phase transition at THO≈ 17.5 K is driven by electronic nematic effects. Here, we search for thermodynamic signatures of this purported structural instability using anisotropic thermal expansion, Young's modulus, elastoresistivity, and specific-heat measurements. In contrast to the published results, we find no evidence of a rotational symmetry breaking in any of our data. Interestingly, our elastoresistivity measurements, which are in full agreement with published results, exhibit a Curie-Weiss divergence, which we however attribute to a volume and not to a symmetry-breaking effect. Finally, clear evidence for thermal fluctuations is observed in our heat-capacity data, from which we estimate the HO correlation length.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)