We have performed a Mössbauer study on iron clusters that are formed in ytterbium films prepared by vapor co-deposition onto kapton substrates kept at room temperature. The film thicknesses were chosen in a range between 2.5 and 2.8 μm. XRD of the films reveals a mixture of fcc- and hcp-like ytterbium. Iron concentrations were between 0.3 and 5 at %. All samples reveal hyperfine spectra attributed to only two types of iron clusters with well defined hyperfine parameters. The clusters are supposed to be formed at boundaries of hcp- and fcc-like grains. In addition there is found a small contribution from monomeric iron. Spectra taken at 4.2 K reveal a complex distribution of magnetic hyperfine fields. The dynamic origin of the spectral shape is supported by susceptibility data revealing spin-freezing at temperatures below ca. 10 K. This proves that the iron clusters have sizes on the order of nm.
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Acknowledgements This work has been made possible by financial supported from CAPES, FAPERJ, FAPES, Brazilian-German research program financed by CNPq and DFG 444BRA-113/55/0-1, and CLAF/CNPq.
- Iron nano-clusters
- Mössbauer spectroscopy
- Vapor deposition
- Ytterbium films