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Title: Interface-induced multiferroism by design in complex oxide superlattices

Interfaces between materials present unique opportunities for the discovery of intriguing quantum phenomena. Here, we explore the possibility that, in the case of superlattices, if one of the layers is made ultrathin, unexpected properties can be induced between the two bracketing interfaces. We pursue this objective by combining advanced growth and characterization techniques with theoretical calculations. Using prototype La 2/3Sr 1/3MnO 3 (LSMO)/BaTiO 3 (BTO) superlattices, we observe a structural evolution in the LSMO layers as a function of thickness. Atomic-resolution EM and spectroscopy reveal an unusual polar structure phase in ultrathin LSMO at a critical thickness caused by interfacing with the adjacent BTO layers, which is confirmed by first principles calculations. Most important is the fact that this polar phase is accompanied by reemergent ferromagnetism, making this system a potential candidate for ultrathin ferroelectrics with ferromagnetic ordering. Monte Carlo simulations illustrate the important role of spin–lattice coupling in LSMO. These results open up a conceptually intriguing recipe for developing functional ultrathin materials via interface-induced spin–lattice coupling.
 [1] ;  [2] ;  [3] ;  [4] ;  [1] ;  [1] ;  [3] ;  [5] ;  [5] ;  [1] ;  [4] ;  [6] ;  [1] ;  [1]
  1. Louisiana State Univ., Baton Rouge, LA (United States)
  2. Louisiana State Univ., Baton Rouge, LA (United States); Brookhaven National Lab. (BNL), Upton, NY (United States)
  3. Southeast Univ., Nanjing (China). School of Energy and Environment
  4. Vanderbilt Univ., Nashville, TN (United States); Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
  5. Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
  6. Brookhaven National Lab. (BNL), Upton, NY (United States)
Publication Date:
Report Number(s):
Journal ID: ISSN 0027-8424
Grant/Contract Number:
AC05-00OR22725; SC0012704
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 114; Journal Issue: 26; Journal ID: ISSN 0027-8424
National Academy of Sciences, Washington, DC (United States)
Research Org:
Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL), Upton, NY (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Basic Energy Sciences (BES) (SC-22)
Country of Publication:
United States
36 MATERIALS SCIENCE; 75 CONDENSED MATTER PHYSICS, SUPERCONDUCTIVITY AND SUPERFLUIDITY; Spin-lattice coupling; interfaces; structural transition
OSTI Identifier:
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1376517