Bismuth volatility effects on the perfection of SrBi[sub 2]Nb[sub 2]O[sub 9] and SrBi[sub 2]Ta[sub 2]O[sub 9] films

Zurbuchen, M. A.; Lettieri, J.; Fulk, S. J.; Jia, Y.; Carim, A. H.; Schlom, D. G.; Streiffer, S. K.
June 2003
Applied Physics Letters;6/30/2003, Vol. 82 Issue 26, p4711
Academic Journal
The volatility of bismuth and bismuth oxide species complicates the growth of phase-pure films of SrBi[SUB2]Nb[SUB2]O[SUB9] and SrBi[SUB2]Ta[SUB2]O[SUB9]. Films that appear phase-pure by x-ray diffraction can have microstructural defects caused by transient bismuth nonstoichiometry, which have a significant impact on properties. Such defects are resolved by transmission electron microscopy. Post-growth (loss of bismuth from a slowly cooled SrBi[SUB2]Ta[SUB2]O[SUB9] (film resulted in the generation of a high density) of out-of-phase boundaries (OPBs), which are demonstrated to be ferroelectrically inactive. In another film, the difference in the rate of desorption of bismuth oxides from SrTiO[SUB3] versus that from SrBi[SUB2]Nb[SUB2]O[SUB9] led to bismuth enrichment at the film-substrate interface, and the formation of an epitaxial reaction layer in an otherwise stoichiometric SrBi[SUB2]Nb[SUB2]O[SUB9] film. This different-composition layer would be expected to alter the electrical properties of the film as a whole. These results help explain the scatter in electrical data reported for similarly oriented films.


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