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Title: Tunable ferroelectric phase transition
Authors: Wang, B
Woo, CH 
Zheng, Y
Issue Date: 2006
Source: Solid mechanics and its applications, 2006, v. 142, p. 1-12 How to cite?
Journal: Solid mechanics and its applications 
Abstract: Ferroelectricity is a collective phenomenon, the characteristics of which depend on the combined effects of many factors, such as the ambient temperature, boundary conditions, sample dimensions, and misfit epitaxial stresses, etc. It is well known that ferroelectric thin films generally exhibit characteristics that are different from their bulk counterparts. By considering ferroelectric thin films on a compliant substrate, we found that the characteristics of the phase transition, such as, the Curie temperature, the order of the phase transition, etc., can be tuned simply by changing the relative thickness of the film and substrate. Our system is described using the time-dependent Ginzburg-Landau equation. The relaxation effect of the free surface is considered using the “extrapolation length” parameter. Based on such a model, we can predict the change of the Curie temperature versus the film and substrate thickness, and determine the critical thickness of the film, under which the ferroelectric transition will be totally suppressed. For some first-order ferroelectric materials, there exists a critical thickness of the substrate, above which the transition becomes second-order due to the constraint of the substrate.
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