Overview of the characteristic features of the magnetic phase transition with regards to the magnetocaloric effect: the hidden relationship between hysteresis and latent heat

2015-04-16T15:01:20Z (GMT) by Kelly Morrison L.F. Cohen
The magnetocaloric effect has seen a resurgence in interest over the last 20 years as a means towards an alternative energy efficient cooling method. This has resulted in a concerted effort to develop the so-called “giant” magnetocaloric materials with large entropy changes that often come at the expense of hysteretic behavior. But do the gains offset the disadvantages? In this paper, we review the relationship between the latent heat of several giant magnetocaloric systems and the associated magnetic field hysteresis. We quantify this relationship by the parameter Δμ 0 H/ΔS L, which describes the linear relationship between field hysteresis, Δμ 0 H, and entropy change due to latent heat, ΔS L. The general trends observed in these systems suggest that itinerant magnets appear to consistently show large ΔS L accompanied by small Δμ 0 H (Δμ 0 H/ΔS L = 0.02 ± 0.01 T/(J K−1 kg−1)), compared to local moment systems, which show significantly larger Δμ 0 H as ΔS L increases (Δμ 0 H/ΔS L = 0.14 ± 0.06 T/(J K−1 kg−1)).