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Title: Oxidation state and interfacial effects on oxygen vacancies in tantalum pentoxide

First-principles density-functional theory calculations are used to study the atomistic structure, structural energetics, and electron density near the O monovacancy (V{sub O}{sup n}; nā€‰=ā€‰0,1+,2+) in both bulk, amorphous tantalum pentoxide (a-Ta{sub 2}O{sub 5}), and also at vacuum and metallic Ta interfaces. We calculate multivariate vacancy formation energies to evaluate stability as a function of oxidation state, distance from interface plane, and Fermi energy. V{sub O}{sup n} of all oxidation states preferentially segregates at both Ta and vacuum interfaces, where the metallic interface exhibits global formation energy minima. In a-Ta{sub 2}O{sub 5}, V{sub O}{sup 0} is characterized by structural contraction and electron density localization, while V{sub O}{sup 2+} promotes structural expansion and is depleted of electron density. In contrast, interfacial V{sub O}{sup 0} and V{sub O}{sup 2+} show nearly indistinguishable ionic and electronic signatures indicative of a reduced V{sub O} center. Interfacial V{sub O}{sup 2+} extracts electron density from metallic Ta, indicating that V{sub O}{sup 2+} is spontaneously reduced at the expense of the metal. This oxidation/reduction behavior suggests careful selection and processing of both oxide layer and metal electrodes for engineering memristor device operation.
Authors:
;  [1]
  1. Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, New Mexico 87185 (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22413187
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Journal of Applied Physics; Journal Volume: 117; Journal Issue: 8; Other Information: (c) 2015 AIP Publishing LLC; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
75 CONDENSED MATTER PHYSICS, SUPERCONDUCTIVITY AND SUPERFLUIDITY; AMORPHOUS STATE; DENSITY FUNCTIONAL METHOD; ELECTRON DENSITY; FORMATION HEAT; INTERFACES; LAYERS; MULTIVARIATE ANALYSIS; OXIDATION; OXYGEN IONS; PHASE STABILITY; REDUCTION; TANTALUM; TANTALUM OXIDES; VACANCIES; VALENCE