Light atom quantum oscillations in UC and US

Yuen Yiu, A. A. Aczel, G. E. Granroth, D. L. Abernathy, M. B. Stone, W. J. L. Buyers, J. Y. Y. Lin, G. D. Samolyuk, G. M. Stocks, S. E. Nagler
2016 Physical review B  
High energy vibrational scattering in the binary systems UC and US is measured using time-of-flight inelastic neutron scattering. A clear set of well-defined peaks equally separated in energy is observed in UC, corresponding to harmonic oscillations of the light C atoms in a cage of heavy U atoms. The scattering is much weaker in US and only a few oscillator peaks are visible. We show how the difference between the materials can be understood by considering the neutron scattering lengths and
more » ... ses of the lighter atoms. Monte Carlo ray tracing is used to simulate the scattering, with near quantitative agreement with the data in UC, and some differences with US. The possibility of observing anharmonicity and anisotropy in the potentials of the light atoms is investigated in UC. Overall the observed data is well accounted for by considering each light atom as a single atom isotropic quantum harmonic oscillator.
doi:10.1103/physrevb.93.014306 fatcat:weq654sgpneyxfc5oqlx2fxtam