skip to main content
DOE PAGES title logo U.S. Department of Energy
Office of Scientific and Technical Information

Title: Observing a previously hidden structural-phase transition onset through heteroepitaxial cap response

Abstract

Characterization of the onset of a phase transition is often challenging due to the fluctuations of the correlation length scales of the order parameters. This is especially true for second-order structural-phase transition due to minute changes involved in the relevant lattice constants. A classic example is the cubic-to-tetragonal second-order phase transition in SrTiO 3 (STO), which is so subtle that it is still unresolved. Here, we demonstrate an approach to resolve this issue by epitaxially grown rhombohedral La 0.7 Sr 0.3 MnO 3 (LSMO) thin films on the cubic STO (100) substrate. The shear strain induced nanotwinning waves in the LSMO film are extremely sensitive to the cubic-to-tetragonal structural-phase transitions of the STO substrate. Upon cooling from room temperature, the development of the nanotwinning waves is spatially inhomogeneous. Untwinned, atomically flat domains, ranging in size from 100 to 300 nm, start to appear randomly in the twinned phase between 265 and 175 K. At ∼139 K, the untwinned, atomically flat domains start to grow rapidly into micrometer scale and finally become dominant at ∼108 K. These results indicate that the low-temperature tetragonal precursor phase of STO has already nucleated at 265 K, significantly higher than the critical temperature of STOmore » (∼105 K). Our work paves a pathway to visualize the onset stages of structural-phase transitions that are too subtle to be observed using direct-imaging methods.« less

Authors:
; ; ; ; ; ; ; ORCiD logo; ; ; ; ORCiD logo;
Publication Date:
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1495315
Grant/Contract Number:  
SC0002136
Resource Type:
Published Article
Journal Name:
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Name: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America Journal Volume: 116 Journal Issue: 10; Journal ID: ISSN 0027-8424
Publisher:
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English

Citation Formats

Lan, Fanli, Chen, Hongyan, Lin, Hanxuan, Bai, Yu, Yu, Yang, Miao, Tian, Zhu, Yinyan, Ward, T. Z., Gai, Zheng, Wang, Wenbin, Yin, Lifeng, Plummer, E. W., and Shen, Jian. Observing a previously hidden structural-phase transition onset through heteroepitaxial cap response. United States: N. p., 2019. Web. doi:10.1073/pnas.1819641116.
Lan, Fanli, Chen, Hongyan, Lin, Hanxuan, Bai, Yu, Yu, Yang, Miao, Tian, Zhu, Yinyan, Ward, T. Z., Gai, Zheng, Wang, Wenbin, Yin, Lifeng, Plummer, E. W., & Shen, Jian. Observing a previously hidden structural-phase transition onset through heteroepitaxial cap response. United States. doi:10.1073/pnas.1819641116.
Lan, Fanli, Chen, Hongyan, Lin, Hanxuan, Bai, Yu, Yu, Yang, Miao, Tian, Zhu, Yinyan, Ward, T. Z., Gai, Zheng, Wang, Wenbin, Yin, Lifeng, Plummer, E. W., and Shen, Jian. Wed . "Observing a previously hidden structural-phase transition onset through heteroepitaxial cap response". United States. doi:10.1073/pnas.1819641116.
@article{osti_1495315,
title = {Observing a previously hidden structural-phase transition onset through heteroepitaxial cap response},
author = {Lan, Fanli and Chen, Hongyan and Lin, Hanxuan and Bai, Yu and Yu, Yang and Miao, Tian and Zhu, Yinyan and Ward, T. Z. and Gai, Zheng and Wang, Wenbin and Yin, Lifeng and Plummer, E. W. and Shen, Jian},
abstractNote = {Characterization of the onset of a phase transition is often challenging due to the fluctuations of the correlation length scales of the order parameters. This is especially true for second-order structural-phase transition due to minute changes involved in the relevant lattice constants. A classic example is the cubic-to-tetragonal second-order phase transition in SrTiO 3 (STO), which is so subtle that it is still unresolved. Here, we demonstrate an approach to resolve this issue by epitaxially grown rhombohedral La 0.7 Sr 0.3 MnO 3 (LSMO) thin films on the cubic STO (100) substrate. The shear strain induced nanotwinning waves in the LSMO film are extremely sensitive to the cubic-to-tetragonal structural-phase transitions of the STO substrate. Upon cooling from room temperature, the development of the nanotwinning waves is spatially inhomogeneous. Untwinned, atomically flat domains, ranging in size from 100 to 300 nm, start to appear randomly in the twinned phase between 265 and 175 K. At ∼139 K, the untwinned, atomically flat domains start to grow rapidly into micrometer scale and finally become dominant at ∼108 K. These results indicate that the low-temperature tetragonal precursor phase of STO has already nucleated at 265 K, significantly higher than the critical temperature of STO (∼105 K). Our work paves a pathway to visualize the onset stages of structural-phase transitions that are too subtle to be observed using direct-imaging methods.},
doi = {10.1073/pnas.1819641116},
journal = {Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America},
number = 10,
volume = 116,
place = {United States},
year = {2019},
month = {2}
}

Journal Article:
Free Publicly Available Full Text
Publisher's Version of Record
DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1819641116

Save / Share:

Works referenced in this record:

Heterostructures of La0.67Sr0.33MnO3/SrTiO3/La0.67Sr0.33MnO3 grown by pulsed laser deposition on (001) SrTiO3
journal, August 2000


X-ray scattering study of the R-point instability in SrTiO 3
journal, July 1986


SrTiO 3 Displacive Transition Revisited via Coherent X-Ray Diffraction
journal, March 2007


Origin of high transport spin polarization in La 0.7 Sr 0.3 MnO 3 : Direct evidence for minority spin states
journal, April 2001


Observation of a Near-Surface Structural Phase Transition in SrTiO 3 by Optical Second Harmonic Generation
journal, October 2000


Evidence of Orbital Reconstruction at Interfaces in Ultrathin La 0.67 Sr 0.33 MnO 3 Films
journal, April 2008


Electron diffraction studies of phonon and static disorder in SrTiO 3
journal, April 2000


Structure and Properties of Functional Oxide Thin Films: Insights From Electronic-Structure Calculations
journal, July 2011


Depth dependence of the structural phase transition of SrTiO 3 studied with β -NMR and grazing incidence x-ray diffraction
journal, June 2011


Structural Phase Transitions
journal, November 2006

  • A. Cowley, R.; M. Shapiro, S.
  • Journal of the Physical Society of Japan, Vol. 75, Issue 11
  • DOI: 10.1143/JPSJ.75.111001

Tunable Metallicity of the La 5 / 8 Ca 3 / 8 MnO 3 ( 001 ) Surface by an Oxygen Overlayer
journal, February 2009


Structural Defects and the Origin of the Second Length Scale in SrTiO 3
journal, March 1998


Modeling of twinning in epitaxial (001)-oriented La0.67Sr0.33MnO3 thin films
journal, June 2005

  • Farag, N.; Bobeth, M.; Pompe, W.
  • Journal of Applied Physics, Vol. 97, Issue 11
  • DOI: 10.1063/1.1914950

Domain patterns in epitaxial rhombohedral ferroelectric films. I. Geometry and experiments
journal, March 1998

  • Streiffer, S. K.; Parker, C. B.; Romanov, A. E.
  • Journal of Applied Physics, Vol. 83, Issue 5
  • DOI: 10.1063/1.366632

Shear-strain-induced low symmetry phase and domain ordering in epitaxial La0.7Sr0.3MnO3 thin films
journal, June 2008

  • Jin, S. W.; Gao, G. Y.; Huang, Z.
  • Applied Physics Letters, Vol. 92, Issue 26
  • DOI: 10.1063/1.2952764

Cubic to Tetragonal Phase Transition of SrTiO3 under Epitaxial Stress: An X-Ray Backscattering Study
journal, October 2000


Phase Diagram of Tetragonal Manganites
journal, April 2000


Neutron- and x-ray-scattering study of the two length scales in the critical fluctuations of SrTiO 3
journal, November 1995


Insulator-metal transition and giant magnetoresistance in La 1 x Sr x MnO 3
journal, May 1995


Are there two length scales at phase transitions?
journal, January 1996


Critical Neutron Scattering in SrTi O 3 and KMn F 3
journal, December 1972


Central peak and narrow component in x-ray scattering measurements near the displacive phase transition in SrTiO 3
journal, September 2008


Near-Surface Structural Phase Transition of SrTiO 3 Studied with Zero-Field β -Detected Nuclear Spin Relaxation and Resonance
journal, April 2006