Lo Vecchio, I.; Perucchi, A.; Di Pietro, P.; Limaj, O.; Schade, U.; Sun, Y.; Arai, M.; Yamaura, K.; Lupi, S.: Infrared evidence of a Slater metal-insulator transition in NaOsO3. Scientific Reports 3 (2013), p. 2990/1-4
Open Accesn Version

The magnetically driven metal-insulator transition (MIT) was predicted by Slater in the fifties. Here a long-range antiferromagnetic (AF) order can open up a gap at the Brillouin electronic band boundary regardless of the Coulomb repulsion magnitude. However, while many low-dimensional organic conductors display evidence for an AF driven MIT, in three-dimensional (3D) systems the Slater MIT still remains elusive. We employ terahertz and infrared spectroscopy to investigate the MIT in the NaOsO3 3D antiferromagnet. From the optical conductivity analysis we find evidence for a continuous opening of the energy gap, whose temperature dependence can be well described in terms of a second order phase transition. The comparison between the experimental Drude spectral weight and the one calculated through Local Density Approximation (LDA) shows that electronic correlations play a limited role in the MIT. All the experimental evidence demonstrates that NaOsO3 is the first known 3D Slater insulator.