In systems with strong electron-lattice coupling, such as manganites, orbital degeneracy is lifted, causing a null expectation value of the orbital magnetic moment. Magnetic structure is thus determined by spin-spin superexchange. In titanates, however, with much smaller Jahn-Teller distortions, orbital degeneracy might allow non-zero values of the orbital magnetic moment, and novel forms of ferromagnetic superexchange interaction unique to t 2g electron systems have been theoretically predicted, although their experimental observation has remained elusive. In this paper, we report a new kind of Ti3+ ferromagnetism at LaMnO3/SrTiO3 epitaxial interfaces. It results from charge transfer to the empty conduction band of the titanate and has spin and orbital contributions evidencing the role of orbital degeneracy. The possibility of tuning magnetic alignment (ferromagnetic or antiferromagnetic) of Ti and Mn moments by structural parameters is demonstrated. This result will provide important clues for understanding the effects of orbital degeneracy in superexchange coupling.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Physics and Astronomy(all)