Symmetry conditions for nonreciprocal light propagation in magnetic crystals

Dávid Szaller, Sándor Bordács, István Kézsmárki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

42 Citations (Scopus)


Recent studies demonstrated the violation of reciprocity in optical processes in low-symmetry magnetic crystals. In these crystals the speed of light can be different for counterpropagating beams. Correspondingly, they can show strong directional anisotropies such as direction dependent absorption also called directional dichroism. Based on symmetry considerations, we identify the magnetic point groups of materials which can host such directional anisotropies and also provide a list of possible candidate materials to observe these phenomena. In most of these cases, the symmetry of the crystal allows directional anisotropy not only for optical processes but also for the propagation of beams of particles and scalar waves. We also predict new types of directional optical anisotropies - besides the toroidal-moment-induced optical magnetoelectric effect and the magnetochiral dichroism investigated so far - and specify the magnetic point groups of crystals where they can emerge.

Original languageEnglish
Article number014421
JournalPhysical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 16 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics

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