AIP Digital Archive
Ferroelectric lead zirconium titanate [Pb (ZrxTi1−x)O3] (PZT) thin films have been synthesized by using an automated laser ablation deposition technique with a capability for layer-by-layer or simultaneous deposition of elemental film constituents. The technique is suitable for producing multicomponent and/or multilayered thin films with controlled stoichiometry, such as high-temperature superconductor, ferroelectric, and electro-optic thin films. PZT films were synthesized on MgO (100) by either sequential deposition of layers of ZrO2, TiO2, and PbO, produced by laser ablation of ZrO2, TiO2, and PbO targets, or by simultaneous deposition of all species from ablation of stoichiometric or PbO-rich PZT targets. Films were deposited at 200 °C and subsequently annealed at 600 °C for different periods of time. The orientation, microstructure, surface topography, and composition of the films were characterized by x-ray diffraction, transmission electron microscopy, scanning electron microscopy, and Rutherford backscattering spectrometry, respectively. As-deposited layer films consists of highly oriented (001) PbO layers, from which highly oriented (110) PZT films are produced after postdeposition annealing. On the other hand, laser ablation of bulk PZT targets yields amorphous as-deposited films, which evolve into highly oriented (100) PZT films after postdeposition annealing. Preliminary electrical characterization of the PZT films included polarization hysteresis, fatigue, conductivity (ac and dc), and capacitance versus voltage measurements. From the initial electrical measurements, it appears that the remnant polarization of the layered PZT films is similar to that of the films produced by laser ablation of bulk PZT targets.
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