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Formation of 90° elastic domains during local 180° switching in epitaxial ferroelectric thin films

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6 Author(s)
Chen, Lang ; Materials Research Science and Engineering Center, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland 20742 ; Ouyang, J. ; Ganpule, C.S. ; Nagarajan, V.
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90° elastic domains were observed after local polings in epitaxial ferroelectric Pb(Zr0.2Ti0.8)O3 thin films via piezoresponse force microscopy. An area of internal stress arises under a conductive atomic force microscope tip due to the opposite signs of the converse piezoelectric effects in the switched domain and the unswitched films surrounding. The formation of 90° domains leads to the relaxation of the internal stress and stabilization of 180° domain after turning off the electric field applied by the tip. The criterion that formulates the necessary condition for realization of the relaxation mechanism is presented as well. © 2004 American Institute of Physics.

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Applied Physics Letters  (Volume:84 ,  Issue: 2 )