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Phys Rev Lett. 2006 Apr 21;96(15):157602. Epub 2006 Apr 19.

In-plane and out-of-plane ferroelectric instabilities in epitaxial SrTiO3 films.

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  • 1Ceramics Laboratory, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, EPFL, CH-1015 Lausanne, Switzerland.


The in-plane and out-of-plane ferroelectric instabilities in compressed (100)-epitaxial SrTiO3 films were examined by infrared reflection spectroscopy. The strongly stiffened in-plane soft mode frequency softened very slowly on cooling. On the other hand, the silent mode appeared at around 150 K, indicating an out-of-plane ferroelectric transition. This behavior points to a split of in-plane and out-of-plane ferroelectric instability temperatures due to the lowered symmetry of the SrTiO3 lattice caused by mechanical misfit strain. Infrared spectroscopy provides a possibility to detect such an effect in the strained epitaxial ferroelectric films.

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