Ferromagnetic Kondo lattice compounds are far less common than their antiferromagnetic analogs. In this Rapid Communication, we report the discovery of a ferromagnetic Kondo lattice compound, YbIr3Ge7. As in almost all ferromagnetic Kondo lattice systems, YbIr3Ge7 shows magnetic order with moments aligned orthogonal to the crystal electric field (CEF) easy axis. YbIr3Ge7 is unique in that it is the only member of this class of compounds that crystallizes in a rhombohedral structure with a trigonal point symmetry of the magnetic site, and it lacks broken inversion symmetry at the local moment site. The ac magnetic susceptibility, magnetization, and specific heat measurements show that YbIr3Ge7 has a Kondo temperature TK≈14 K and a Curie temperature TC=2.4K. Ferromagnetic order occurs along the crystallographic  hard CEF axis despite the large CEF anisotropy of the ground-state Kramers doublet with a saturation moment along  almost four times larger than the one along . This implies that a mechanism which considers the anisotropy in the exchange interaction to explain the hard-axis ordering is unlikely. On the other hand, the broad second-order phase transition at TC favors a fluctuation-induced mechanism.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
- Condensed Matter Physics