Multicaloric effect in bi-layer multiferroic composites

Melvin Marian Vopson, Dayu Zhou, G. Caruntu

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    The multicaloric effect was theoretically proposed in 2012 and, despite numerous follow up studies, the effect still awaits experimental confirmation. The main limitation is the fact that the multicaloric effect is only observed at a temperature equal to the transition temperature of the magnetic and electric phases coexisting within a multiferroic (MF) (i.e., T ≈ Tc m ≈ Tc e ). Such condition is hard to fulfill in single phase MFs and a solution is to develop suitable composite MF materials. Here, we examine the multicaloric effect in a bi-layer laminated composite MF in order to determine the optimal design parameters for best caloric response. We show that magnetically induced multicaloric effect requires magnetic component of heat capacity smaller than that of the electric phase, while the layer thickness of the magnetic phase must be at least 5 times the thickness of the electric phase. The electrically induced multicaloric effect requires the magnetic layer to be 10% of the electric phase thickness, while its heat capacity must be larger than that of the electric phase. These selection rules are generally applicable to bulk as well as thin film MF composites for optimal multicaloric effect.
    Original languageEnglish
    Article number182905
    Number of pages4
    JournalApplied Physics Letters
    Issue number18
    Publication statusPublished - 3 Nov 2015


    • Composite multiferroics
    • heat capacity
    • multicaloric effect
    • solid state refrigeration


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