A nanoscale phase is known to coincide with colossal magnetoresistance (CMR) in manganites, but its volume fraction is believed to be too small to affect CMR. Here we provide scanning-electron-nanodiffraction images of nanoclusters as they form and evolve with temperature in La1-xCaxMnO3, x=0.45. They are not doping inhomogeneities, and their structure is that of the bulk compound at x=0.60, which at low temperatures is insulating. Their volume fraction peaks at the CMR critical temperature and is estimated to be 22% at finite magnetic fields. In view of the known dependence of the nanoscale phase on magnetic fields, such a volume fraction can make a significant contribution to the CMR peak.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)