Elastic relaxation and correlation of local strain gradients with ferroelectric domains in (001) BiFeO3 nanostructures

Jeffrey A. Klug, Martin V. Holt, Ramesh Nath Premnath, Alexandra Joshi-Imre, Seungbum Hong, Ram S. Katiyar, Michael J. Bedzyk, Orlando Auciello*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


We report an elastic relaxation and increase in local strain variation correlated with ferroelectric domains within epitaxial BiFeO3 thin film nanostructures fabricated by combined electron-beam and focused ion-beam nanolithography. Nano-focused x-ray diffraction microscopy provided new insights into the relationship between film strain and ferroelectric domains in nanostructures, namely: (i) an out-of-plane (C-axis) elastic relaxation of as much as -1.8 c/c in a BFO film-based nanostructure relative to the planar film lattice constant; (ii) an out-of-plane rotation trending from the center towards all released edges of the nanostructure; and (iii) an increase of inter-domain strain variation within the nanostructure of approximately 10 times the inter-domain variation found within the planar film, correlated with ferroelectric domain boundaries as confirmed by piezoresponse-force microscopy. These results indicate that the release of in-plane BFO/SRO mismatch strain in a planar film is taken up by the local ferroelectric domain structure after patterning, resulting in greatly increased mechanical strain gradients within the structure.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number052902
JournalApplied Physics Letters
Issue number5
StatePublished - Aug 1 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)


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