Monocrystalline YBa[sub 2]Cu[sub 3]O[sub 7-x] thin films on vicinal SrTiO[sub 3] (001) substrates

Dekkers, J. Matthijn; Rijnders, Guus; Harkema, Sybolt; Smilde, Henk Jan H.; Hilgenkamp, Hans; Rogalla, Horst; Blank, Dave H.A.
December 2003
Applied Physics Letters;12/22/2003, Vol. 83 Issue 25, p5199
Academic Journal
The correlation between the vicinal properties of SrTiO[sub 3] (001) substrates and the twinning in YBa[sub 2]Cu[sub 3]O[sub 7-x] thin films grown by pulsed-laser deposition is studied using x-ray diffraction with reciprocal space mapping. The vicinal properties, i.e., angle and in-plane orientation, play a significant role in the anisotropic strain starting at the interface between substrate surface and film, and affect the twin behavior of YBa[sub 2]Cu[sub 3]O[sub 7-x]. On substrates having an [110] in-plane orientation of the step edges, a completely preferred twin pair is observed if the vicinal angle is increased to 0.60°. Whereas on substrates having their step edges oriented along one of the crystallographic axis, the films exhibit a detwinning as the vicinal angle increases. For α=1.10° a maximum detwinned, i.e., monocrystalline film is obtained. At this angle, the diffusion length of YBa[sub 2]Cu[sub 3]O[sub 7-x] during the growth matches the terrace length of SrTiO[sub 3]. Up to this specific angle, the films are grown perpendicular to the optical instead of the crystallographic surface. © 2003 American Institute of Physics.


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