Of the perovskites, ABX3, a subset of special interest is the family in which the A site is occupied by a lanthanide ion, the B site by a transition metal and X is oxygen, as such materials often exhibit a large change in electrical resistance in a magnetic field, a phenomenon known as "colossal" magnetoresistance (MR). Two additional phenomena in this family have also drawn attention: the metal-insulator transition (MIT) and electroresistance (ER). The MIT is revealed by measuring resistance as a function of temperature, and observing a change in the sign of the gradient. ER – the dependence of the resistance on applied current – is revealed by measuring resistance as a function of applied current. Up until now, the phenomena of MIT and ER have been treated separately. Here we report simultaneous observation of the MIT and ER in the lanthanum/calcium manganites. We accomplish this by measuring voltage-current curves over a wide temperature range (10–300 K) allowing us to build up an experimental voltage surface over current-temperature axes. These data directly lead to resistance surfaces. This approach provides additional insight into the phenomena of electrical transport in the lanthanum/calcium manganites, in particular the close connection of the maximum ER to the occurrence of the MIT in those cases of a paramagnetic insulator (PMI) to ferromagnetic metal (FMM) transition.
PACS Codes: 71.30.+h, 71.38.-k, 75.47.Lx