Low-temperature study of nonlinear transport across oxide grain boundaries

Shao, Rui; Vavro, Juro; Bonnell, Dawn A.
July 2004
Applied Physics Letters;7/26/2004, Vol. 85 Issue 4, p561
Academic Journal
Reduced 36.8° (Σ5) and 24° SrTiO3 bicrystals with carrier concentrations on the order of 1×1017 to 1.0×1018 cm-3 were studied with dc transport measurement from room temperature to 1.4 K. For lightly reduced samples, nonlinearity in I–V curves was observed at very low temperatures indicating the existence of a small grain-boundary potential barrier and the transport mechanism can be rationalized in terms of tunneling through a disordered region associated with the boundary. Samples with further reduction showed no nonlinearity. This reduction-dependent phenomenon is proposed to be due to the oxygen vacancy segregation to the grain boundary.


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