Investigation of polarization switching over broad time and field domains in various ferroelectrics
Jullian, Christelle Francoise
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Investigations of polarization switching over broad time and electric field domains, in various modified Pb-based perovskite ferroelectrics, were systematically performed by ferroelectric switching current transient and bipolar drive P-E responses. Studies were performed from E«Ec to E»Ec, where Ec is the coercive field These investigations have shown the presence of broad relaxation time distributions for the switching process, which can extend over several decades in order of magnitude in time, and where the distribution is strongly dependent on the applied electric field. By performing the study of domain dynamics and polarization switching over extremely broad time domains (10⁻⁸ t < 10² sec), more complete information has been obtained that allows for development of a better mechanistic understanding. Prior polarization kinetics studies have focused on relatively narrow time ranges, and were fit to the Avarami equation, which contains a single relaxation time. However, our broad band width polarization dynamics and frequency relaxation studies have been fit to multiple stretched exponential functions extending over decades of order of magnitude in the time domain. Stretched exponential functions for domain nuclei formation, and for domain variant growth have been found. For example, c, c, and c oriented PZN-4.5%PT crystals, nucleation was found to be a volume process (n=3) rather than just a domain wall restricted process. Consequently, nucleation is heterogeneous. And, growth of a domain variant with reversed polarization was found to be a boundary process (n=2), involving diffuse or rough domain walls. We have extended these studies to various types of ferroelectrics including hard, soft and relaxor types.
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