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Phys Rev Lett. 2012 Mar 2;108(9):097401. Epub 2012 Feb 28.

Ferroelectric soft mode in a SrTiO3 thin film impulsively driven to the anharmonic regime using intense picosecond terahertz pulses.

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Interdisciplinary Research Center, Yokohama National University, Yokohama 240-8501, Japan.


The ferroelectric soft mode in a SrTiO(3) thin film was impulsively driven to a large amplitude using intense picosecond terahertz pulses. As the terahertz electric field increased, the soft-mode absorption peak exhibited blueshifting and spectral narrowing. A classical anharmonic oscillator model suggests that the induced displacement is comparable to that of the ferroelectric phase transition. The spectral narrowing indicates that the displacement exceeds that induced by any inhomogeneities in the film, demonstrating that the method can be used to explore intrinsic quartic anharmonicity.

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