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Magnetic excitations and the search for crystal-field transitions in the heavy-fermion superconductor UPd2Al3

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Krimmel, A., Loidl, A., Eccleston, R., Geibel, C., & Steglich, F. (1996). Magnetic excitations and the search for crystal-field transitions in the heavy-fermion superconductor UPd2Al3. Journal of Physics: Condensed Matter, 8(11), 1677-1685. doi:10.1088/0953-8984/8/11/012.

We have performed inelastic neutron scattering (INS) experiments to study the spin dynamics and search for crystalline-electric-field (CEF) excitations in the antiferromagnetic heavy-fermion superconductor UPd2Al3. The low-energy-transfer spectra are predominantly characterized by a quasielastic Lorentzian (weighted by the detailed balance factor) with a residual line width of approximately 5 meV. For uranium-based intermetallics, this is an unusually small line width and UPd2Al3 is one of the rare examples of 5f-electron systems whose residual line width corresponds to the macroscopically estimated Kondo lattice temperature. However, significant deviations from this fit suggest additional inelastic contributions that persist up to T = 150 K, i.e. 10T(N). This additional scattering may be attributed to the presence of CEF excitations or intersite magnetic correlations. A survey of the scattering within the whole accessible momentum-energy space provides further evidence for the existence of these inelastic magnetic intensities. We find a surprisingly good agreement between the excitation energies of our neutron scattering spectra and a CEF-level scheme proposed on the basis of magnetic susceptibility and specific heat measurements.