We synthesize and study single crystals of the layered honeycomb lattice Mott insulators Na2RuO3 and Li2RuO3 with magnetic Ru4+(4d4) ions. The newly found Na2RuO3 features a nearly ideal honeycomb lattice and orders antiferromagnetically at 30 K. Single crystals of Li2RuO3 adopt a honeycomb lattice with either C2/m or more distorted P21/m below 300 K, depending on detailed synthesis conditions. We find that Li2RuO3 in both structures hosts a well-defined magnetic state, in contrast to the singlet ground state found in polycrystalline Li2RuO3. A phase diagram generated based on our results uncovers a new, direct correlation between the magnetic ground state and basal-plane distortions in the honeycomb ruthenates.

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Published in Physical Review B: Condensed Matter and Materials Physics, v. 90, no. 16, article 161110, p. 1-6.

©2014 American Physical Society

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Funding Information

This work was supported by the National Science Foundation via Grants No. DMR-0856234, No. DMR-1265162, and No. DMR-1056536 (R.K.K.), Russian Science Foundation via RSCF Grant No. 14-22-00004 (S.V.S.), German project FOR 1346, Cologne University via German excellence initiative (D.K.), DOE BES Office of Scientific User Facilities (F.Y.), and China Scholarship Council (J.C.W.).

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