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Title: Insights on dramatic radial fluctuations in track formation by energetic ions

We discuss the insights on the unexpected dramatic radial variations in the ion tracks formed by energetic ion (2.3 GeV 208Pb) irradiation at a constant electronic energy-loss (~42 keV/nm) in pyrochlore structured Gd2TiZrO7. Though previous studies have shown track formation and average track diameter measurements, this work brings further clarity on why quantitative analysis of ion track formation in Gd2TixZr(1-x)O7 systems can be more complicated than the currently accepted behavior for ion tracks. The ion track profile is usually considered to be diametrically uniform at constant values of the electronic energy-loss. This study shows the diameter variations to be as large as ~40% within an extremely short incremental track length of ~20 nm. Our molecular dynamics simulations show that these fluctuations in diameter of amorphous core and overall track diameter are attributed to (i) the stochastic nature of inelastic energy loss along the track and (ii) the random substitution of Ti atoms by Zr atoms on the B-site in the pyrochlore lattice. Furthermore, the partial substitution of Ti by Zr increases the favorability of the defect-fluorite structure formation over amorphous phase stochastically, by introducing localized inhomogeneity in atomic structure, density and strain.
 [1] ;  [2] ;  [3] ;  [4] ;  [1] ;  [4] ;  [1]
  1. Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
  2. Univ. of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN (United States)
  3. GSI-Hemholtzzentrum fur Schwerionenforschung, Darmstadt (Germany); Technische Univ. Darmstadt, Darmstadt (Germany)
  4. Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Univ. of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Grant/Contract Number:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Scientific Reports
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 6; Journal ID: ISSN 2045-2322
Nature Publishing Group
Research Org:
Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Science (SC)
Country of Publication:
United States
73 NUCLEAR PHYSICS AND RADIATION PHYSICS; 36 MATERIALS SCIENCE ion track; pyrochlore; STEM; molecular dynamics