Nonlinear optical generation from a crystalline material can reveal the symmetries of both its lattice structure and underlying ordered electronic phases and can therefore be exploited as a complementary technique to diffraction based scattering probes. Although this technique has been successfully used to study the lattice and magnetic structures of systems such as semiconductor surfaces, multiferroic crystals, magnetic thin films, and multilayers, challenging technical requirements have prevented its application to the plethora of complex electronic phases found in strongly correlated electron systems. These requirements include an ability to probe small bulk single crystals at the μm length scale, a need for sensitivity to the entire nonlinear optical susceptibility tensor, oblique light incidence reflection geometry, and incident light frequency tunability among others. These measurements are further complicated by the need for extreme sample environments such as ultra low temperatures, high magnetic fields, or high pressures. In this review we present a novel experimental construction using a rotating light scattering plane that meets all the aforementioned requirements. We demonstrate the efficacy of our scheme by making symmetry measurements on a μm scale facet of a small bulk single crystal of Sr2IrO4 using optical second and third harmonic generation.

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Published in Review of Scientific Instruments, v. 85, no. 8, article 083102, p. 1-8.

Copyright 2014 AIP Publishing. This article may be downloaded for personal use only. Any other use requires prior permission of the author and AIP Publishing.

The following article appeared in Review of Scientific Instruments, v. 85, no. 8, article 083102, p. 1-8 and may be found at http://dx.doi.org/10.1063/1.4891417.

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D.H. acknowledges partial support by the U. S. Army Research Office under Grant No. W911NF-13-1-0059. Instrumentation for the NHG-RA setup was partially supported by a U. S. Army Research Office DURIP award under Grant No. W911NF-13-1-0293. D.H. acknowledges funding provided by the Institute for Quantum Information and Matter, an NSF Physics Frontiers Center (PHY-1125565) with support of the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation through Grant No. GBMF1250. G.C. acknowledges NSF support via Grant No. DMR-1265162.

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