In materials that exhibit antiferromagnetism
, the spins of magnetic electrons
align in a regular pattern with neighboring spins pointing in opposite directions. This is the opposite of ferromagnetism
. Generally, antiferromagnetic materials exhibit antiferromagnetism at a low temperature, and become disordered above a certain temperature; the transition temperature is called the Neel temperature
. Above the Neel temperature, the material is typically paramagnetic
The magnetic susceptibility of an antiferromagnetic material will appear to go through a maximum as the temperature is lowered; in contrast, that of a paramagnet will continually increase with decreasing temperature.
Antiferromagnetic materials have a negative coupling between adjacent moments and low frustration.
Antiferromagnetic materials are relatively uncommon. An example is the heavy-fermion superconductor URu2Si2.