We report ab initio density functional theory calculation and Raman scattering results to explore the electronic structure of Ba5CuIr3O12 single crystals. This insulating iridate, consisting of face-sharing IrO6 octahedra forming quasi-one-dimensional chains, cannot be described by the local jeff=1/2 moment picture commonly adopted for discussing the electronic and magnetic properties of iridate compounds with IrO6 octahedra. The shorter Ir-Ir distance in the face-sharing geometry, compared to corner- or edge-sharing structures, leads to strong covalency between neighboring Ir. Then, this strong covalency results in the formation of molecular orbitals (MOs) at each Ir trimer as the low-energy electronic degree of freedom. The theoretically predicted three-peak structure in the joint density of states, a distinct indication of deviation from the jeff=1/2 picture, is verified by observing the three-peak structure in the electronic excitation spectrum by Raman scattering.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
- Condensed Matter Physics