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Volume 112, Issue 2, 15 July 2012
Aurivillius phase thin films of Bi5Ti3(FexMn1−x)O15 with x = 1 (Bi5Ti3FeO15) and 0.7 (Bi5Ti3Fe0.7Mn0.3O15) on SiO2-Si(100) and Pt/Ti/SiO2-Si substrates were fabricated by chemical solution deposition. The method was optimized in order to suppress formation of pyrochlore phase Bi2Ti2O7 and improve crystallinity. The structuralproperties of the films were examined by x-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, and atomic force microscopy. Optimum crystallinity and pyrochlore phase suppression was achieved by the addition of 15 to 25 mol. % excess bismuth to the sols. Based on this study, 17.5 mol. % excess bismuth was used in the preparation of Bi2Ti2O7-free films of Bi5Ti3FeO15 on SrTiO3(100) and NdGaO3(001) substrates, confirming the suppression of pyrochlore phase using this excess of bismuth. Thirty percent of the Fe3+ ions in Bi5Ti3FeO15 was substituted with Mn3+ ions to form Bi2Ti2O7-free thin films of Bi5Ti3Fe0.7Mn0.3O15 on Pt/Ti/SiO2-Si, SiO2-Si(100), SrTiO3(100), and NdGaO3(001) substrates. Bi5Ti3FeO15 and Bi5Ti3Fe0.7Mn0.3O15thin films on Pt/Ti/SiO2-Si and SiO2-Si(100) substrates were achieved with a higher degree of a-axis orientation compared with the films on SrTiO3(100) and NdGaO3(001) substrates. Room temperature electromechanical and magnetic properties of the thin films were investigated in order to assess the potential of these materials for piezoelectric,ferroelectric, and multiferroic applications. Vertical piezoresponse force microscopy measurements of the films demonstrate that Bi5Ti3FeO15 and Bi5Ti3Fe0.7Mn0.3O15thin films are piezoelectric at room temperature. Room temperature switching spectroscopy-piezoresponse force microscopy measurements in the presence and absence of an applied bias demonstrate local ferroelectric switching behaviour (180°) in the films. Superconducting quantum interference device magnetometry measurements do not show any room temperature ferromagnetic hysteresis down to an upper detection limit of 2.53 × 10−3 emu; and it is concluded, therefore, that such films are not mutiferroic at room temperature. Piezoresponse force microscopy lithography images of Bi5Ti3Fe0.7Mn0.3O15thin films are presented.
Generalized differential effective medium method for simulating effective elastic properties of two dimensional percolating composites112(2012); http://dx.doi.org/10.1063/1.4739459View Description Hide Description
In this paper, we propose an approach for calculating the effective elastic properties of composite materials taking into account the percolation phenomena. This approach is based on the generalized differential effective medium method and, in contrast to the commonly used self-consistent methods, it allows us to incorporate the percolation threshold in the homogenization scheme for simulating the effective elastic moduli of a 2D medium. In this case, a composite is treated as an elastic host where elliptical inclusions of two types are embedded: (1) soft elliptical inclusions (holes) and (2) elastic elliptical inclusions which have the same properties as the host. The comparison of theoretical simulations with the experimental data for metal plates containing holes has shown that the proposed approach describes well the behavior of the elastic moduli in a wide range of the hole concentration including the area near the percolation threshold.