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Title: Dynamic interface rearrangement in LaFeO 3 / n - SrTiO 3 heterojunctions

Thin-film synthesis methods that have developed over the past decades have unlocked emergent interface properties ranging from conductivity to ferroelectricity. However, our attempts to exercise precise control over interfaces are constrained by a limited understanding of growth pathways and kinetics. In this paper, we demonstrate that shuttered molecular beam epitaxy induces rearrangements of atomic planes at a polar/nonpolar junction of LaFeO 3 (LFO)/n-SrTiO 3 (STO) depending on the substrate termination. Surface characterization confirms that substrates with two different (TiO 2 and SrO) terminations were prepared prior to LFO deposition; however, local electron-energy-loss spectroscopy measurements of the final heterojunctions show a predominantly LaO/TiO 2 interfacial junction in both cases. Ab initio simulations suggest that the interfaces can be stabilized by trapping extra oxygen (in LaO/TiO 2) and forming oxygen vacancies (in FeO 2/SrO), which points to different growth kinetics in each case and may explain the apparent disappearance of the FeO 2/SrO interface. Finally, we conclude that judicious control of deposition time scales can be used to modify growth pathways, opening new avenues to control the structure and properties of interfacial systems.
 [1] ;  [1] ;  [1] ;  [2]
  1. Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States). Physical and Computational Sciences Directorate
  2. Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States). Physical and Computational Sciences Directorate; Auburn Univ., AL (United States). Dept. of Physics
Publication Date:
Report Number(s):
Journal ID: ISSN 2475-9953
Grant/Contract Number:
AC05-76RL01830; PN13100/2581
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Physical Review Materials
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 1; Journal Issue: 6; Journal ID: ISSN 2475-9953
American Physical Society (APS)
Research Org:
Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Basic Energy Sciences (BES) (SC-22); USDOE Office of Science (SC), Biological and Environmental Research (BER) (SC-23); PNNL Laboratory Directed Research and Development (LDRD) Program
Country of Publication:
United States
36 MATERIALS SCIENCE; composition; crystal phenomena; defects; growth; surface & interfacial phenomena; thin films; density functional theory; electron energy loss spectroscopy; molecular beam epitaxy; scanning transmission electron microscopy
OSTI Identifier:
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1407448