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Defect-mediated lattice relaxation and domain stability in ferroelectric oxides

Kimmel, A V; Weaver, P M; Cain, M G; Sushko, P V* (2012) Defect-mediated lattice relaxation and domain stability in ferroelectric oxides. Phys. Rev. Lett., 109 (11). 117601

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Mechanical, optical, thermal, and magnetic properties of materials are strongly aected and, sometimes, dominated by point defects and their complexes. In ferroic materials, changes of the ferroelectric, dielectric and piezoelectric proper-ties, which either occur spontaneously (ageing) [1] or accumulate in the course of numerous ferroelectric axis switching events (fatigue) [2] have been attributed to the presence of defects. Models linking defects and macroscopic phenomena in ferroelectrics can be broadly assigned to two groups [2, 3]. The boundary models focus on the defects interaction with grain and domain boundaries and surfaces [4, 5], while the bulk models accent on reorientation of defects conforming to the direction of the spontaneous polarization [2, 6]. While experimental evidence supporting both groups of models exist, it is acknowledged that long-term modifcations of materials properties are likely to be governed by an interplay of several elementary processes [7]. In this Letter we show that defects in ferroelectric materials can stabilize not only by diffusing from metastable to stable configurations but also by inducing rotation of the polar axis, which forms precursors for formation of differently polarized domains.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: modelling, ferroelectrics
Subjects: Advanced Materials
Advanced Materials > Functional Materials
Identification number/DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.109.117601
Last Modified: 02 Feb 2018 13:14
URI: http://eprintspublications.npl.co.uk/id/eprint/5587

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