****Technical Abstract****Charge conduction in ferroelectrics, more often called leakage, has been considered a serious problem that depreciates their functionality. However, remarkable electronic transport properties have been recently reported in ferroelectric domains and walls in multiferroics with non-zero d electrons. These novel properties include significant conduction in ferroelectric domain walls, polarization-modulated rectification, and switchable photovoltaic effects. The objective envisioned in the proposal is to characterize the underlying mechanisms of charge conduction and photovoltaic effects of individual domains and walls in high-quality single crystals of semiconducting multiferroics, including polar magnets, using standard transport measurements and Scanning Probe Microscopy (SPM) in controlled environments. Crystallographic and magnetic structural correlation with charge transport properties will be investigated using transmission electron microscopy (TEM), and synchrotron x-ray and neutron scattering. The results will be important in order to exploit potential technologies based on nanoscale functional transport properties, such as resistive ferroelectric memories, sensors, and novel energy-harvest devices. Integration of fundamental research and education of graduate, undergraduate and high-school students will be a critical part. High school students will be involved through the Partners in Science Program, organized by the liberty Science Center, New Jersey. New research results from the proposed projects will be a valuable part of a graduate course on up-to-date materials physics.****Non-Technical Abstract****Magnetism and ferroelectricity are imperative bases for current technology and multiferroic materials, where magnetism and ferroelectricity coexist, have been extensively investigated for great technological and fundamental scientific importance. However, the unprecedented functional charge transport properties in multiferroics have been only recently revealed. The objectives envisioned in the proposal include to characterize the mechanism of the functional charge transport properties in multiferroics, and to exploit potential technologies based on nanoscale functional transport properties, such as resistive ferroelectric memories, sensors, and novel energy-harvest devices. The centerpiece of the proposal is a wide spectrum of collaboration, so a multiplicity of techniques and skills will be utilized. The proposed study will further strengthen the role of research in all levels of education. For example, high school students will be involved in the proposed research through the Partners in Science program, organized by the Liberty Science Center, Jersey City, New Jersey, which the PI has been continuously involved in for the last 11 years, and new research results from the proposed projects will be a valuable part of a graduate course on up-to-date materials physics.
|Effective start/end date||7/1/11 → 6/30/14|
- National Science Foundation (National Science Foundation (NSF))