Electron tunneling characteristics on La0.7Sr0.3MnO3 thin-film surfaces at high temperature

Katsiev, Khabiboulakh; Yildiz, Bilge; Balasubramaniam, Kavaipatti; Salvador, Paul A.
August 2009
Applied Physics Letters;8/31/2009, Vol. 95 Issue 9, p092106
Academic Journal
We report on the electron tunneling characteristics on La0.7Sr0.3MnO3 (LSM) thin-film surfaces up to 580 °C in 10-3 mbar oxygen pressure, using scanning tunneling microscopy/spectroscopy (STM/STS). A thresholdlike drop in the tunneling current was observed at positive bias in STS, which is interpreted as a unique indicator for the activation polarization in cation-oxygen bonding on LSM cathodes. Sr-enrichment was found on the surface at high temperature using Auger electron spectroscopy, and was accompanied by a decrease in tunneling conductance in STS. This suggests that Sr-terminated surfaces are less active for electron transfer in oxygen reduction compared to Mn-terminated surfaces on LSM.


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