Theory of PbTiO3, BaTiO3, and SrTiO3 surfaces

B. Meyer, J. Padilla, David Vanderbilt

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179 Scopus citations


First-principles total-energy calculations are carried out for (001) surfaces of the cubic perovskite ATiO3 compounds PbTiO3 , BaTiO3 , and SrTiO3. Both AO-terminated and TiO2-terminated surfaces are considered, and fully-relaxed atomic configurations are determined. In general, BaTiO3 and SrTiO3 are found to have a rather similar behavior, while PbTiO3 is different in many respects because of the partially covalent character of the Pb-O bonds. PbTiO3 and BaTiO3 are ferroelectrics, and the influence of the surface upon the ferroelectric distortions is studied for a tetragonal ferroelectric distortion parallel to the surface. The surface relaxation energies are found to be substantial, i.e., many times larger than the bulk ferroelectric well depth. Nevertheless, the influence of the surface upon the ferroelectric order parameter is modest, and is qualitatively as well as quantitatively different for the two materials. Surface energies and electronic properties are also computed. It is found that for BaTiO3 and SrTiO3 surfaces, both AO-terminated and TiO2-terminated surfaces can be thermodynamically stable, whereas for PbTiO3 only the PbO surface termination is stable.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)395-405
Number of pages11
JournalFaraday Discussions
StatePublished - 1999

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry


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