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Limits of the quasiharmonic approximation in MgO: Volume dependence of optical modes investigated by infrared reflectivity and ab initio calculations

Abstract : Experimental and numerical investigation of phonon optical modes of MgO as a function of temperature (from 300 to 1400 K) and pressure (from 0 to 21 GPa) are here presented. Infrared reflectivity measurements were performed to probe energies and widths of the optical phonons, as well as of the multiphonon processes affecting the spectral shape, over a variation of the unit cell volume exceeding 20%. Calculations within quasi harmonic approximation (QHA) account well for the volume dependence of the optical phonon energies observed in highpressure experiments, while they fail at larger volumes, corresponding to the highest investigated temperatures. Moreover, QHA calculations more closely predict energies of transverse optical (TO) modes than those of longitudinal optical (LO) ones. This can be ascribed to known limitations in the modeling of the effective charges (*) and dielectric constant (∞) that lead to an underestimation of the LO-TO splitting. Based on the comparison of our experimental and theoretical results, we propose an empirical analytical expression for * 2 ⁄ ∞ as a function of the atomic cell volume. Density-functional perturbation theory including phonon-phonon scattering up to the third order of the lattice potential expansion is used to calculate phonon widths. These calculations reproduce and explain remarkably well the non-trivial volume dependence of both TO and LO phonons linewidths determined by the experiments.
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Contributor : Daniele Antonangeli <>
Submitted on : Thursday, February 18, 2021 - 5:08:17 PM
Last modification on : Tuesday, February 23, 2021 - 3:27:32 AM

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Eugenio Calandrini, Lorenzo Paulatto, Daniele Antonangeli, Fei He, Ricardo Lobo, et al.. Limits of the quasiharmonic approximation in MgO: Volume dependence of optical modes investigated by infrared reflectivity and ab initio calculations. Physical Review B, American Physical Society, 2021, 103 (5), ⟨10.1103/PhysRevB.103.054302⟩. ⟨hal-03145971⟩

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