Manipulating ferroelectric behaviors via electron-beam induced crystalline defects
Ferroelectric nanoplates are attractive for applications in nanoelectronic devices. Defect engineering has been an effective way to control and manipulate ferroelectric properties in nanoscale devices. Defects can act as pinning centers for ferroelectric domain wall motion, altering the switching properties and domain dynamics of ferroelectrics. However, there is a lack of detailed investigation on the interactions between defects and domain walls in ferroelectric nanoplates due to the limitation of previous characterization techniques, which impedes the development of defect engineering in ferroelectric nanodevices. In this study, we applied in situ biasing transmission electron microscopy to explore how dislocation loops, which were judiciously introduced into barium titanate nanoplates via electron beam irradiation, affect the motion of ferroelectric domain walls. The results show that the motion was dramatically suppressed by these localized defects, because of the local strain fields induced by the defects. The pinning effect can be further enhanced by multiple domain walls embedded with defect arrays. These results indicate the possibility of manipulating domain switching in ferroelectric nanoplates via the electron beam.
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Australian Research Council