Epitaxial Perovskite Superlattices For Voltage Tunable Device Applications
Choudhury, Palash Roy
MetadataShow full item record
Perovskite based artificial superlattices has recently been extensively investigated due to the immense promise in various device applications. The major applications include non-volatile random access memories, microwave devices, phase shifters voltage tunable capacitor applications etc. In this thesis we have taken up the investigation of two different types of symmetric superlattices, viz. BaZrO3/BaTiO3 and SrTiO3/BaZrO3, with possible applicability to voltage tunable devices. Chapter 1 deals with the introduction to the perovskite based functional oxides. Their various applications and the specific requirements for voltage tunable device applications has also been discussed in detail. The basic properties of BaTiO3 and SrTiO3, which are well documented in the literature, have been reviewed. The fundamental physics of interfacial interactions that influence the properties of superlattices is also discussed using existing models. The reason behind the choice of constructing artificial superlattices of BaZrO3/BaTiO3 and SrTiO3/BaZrO3 and the motivation behind this thesis is outlined. Chapter 2 gives a brief description of the basic characterization techniques that has been employed for studying the thin films. These include pulsed laser deposition of oxide thin films, structural characterization using X-Ray Diffraction and Atomic Force Microscope and electrical characterization of thin film metal-insulator-metal structures. The basic principle behind the techniques has also been included in various sections of this chapter. Chapter 3 introduces the reader to basic properties of the less studied perovskite material BaZrO3, one of the parent components of Ba(Zr,Ti)O3 based ceramics for high frequency applications. BaZrO3 is the common material in both the types of superlattices studied in this thesis. Initially the growth of polycrystalline BaZrO3 on (111)Pt/TiO2/SiO2/Si has been elaborated in this chapter. After characterizing the crystalline quality of the films and optimizing the growth conditions, epitaxial BaZrO3 films has been grown on (001) SrTiO3 substates. Dielectric properties of epitaxial BaZrO3 film have been measured as a function of temperature and frequencies. The electric field tunability of BaZrO3 films has been calculated from capacitance-voltage data for comparison with superlattice structures. Chapter 4 deals with the basic considerations involving growth of artificial superlattices and multilayers using pulsed laser ablation technique. The fundamental differences between formation of multilayers and superlattices have also been discussed, and the basic considerations for optimizing growth parameters are analyzed in this chapter. X-ray θ-2θ and φ-scans have been performed to investigate crystal quality of superlattices. The growth rates calculated from the satellite reflections in X-ray θ-2θ scans indicate fair degree of control over the growth and φ-scans confirms epitaxial cube-on cube growth of both types of superlattices. Atomic Force microscopy has been used to hcaracterize the film quality and surface morphology of superlattice structures and it has been found that the films have a very smooth surface with rms roughness of the order of few nanometres. Chapter5 deals with the detailed electrical characterization of both types of superlattices structures. Dielectric response showed nearly temperature invariance for both types of superlattices. Polarization measurements show that the heterostructures are in paraelectric state. Even for paraelectric/ferroelectric BaZrO3/BaTiO3 superlattices, stress induced stabilization of the paraelectric state is exhibited in low period superlattices. Paraelectric/paraelectric-SrTiO3/BaZrO3 superlattices exhibited a tunability of ~20% at intermediate modulation periods and an extremely stable dissipation factor with respect to temperature which is very attractive for device application point of view. A maximum tunability of ~40% has been observed for lowest period BaZrO3/BaTiO3 superlattice. Relatively high Quality Factors has been observed for both type of superlattices and their dependence on the modulation periods has been analyzed. Dielectric relaxation data showed that Maxwell-Wanger type of behaviour is exhibited but the presence of a conductance component G had to be realized in the equivalent circuit representation, which originates from the observation of a square law dependence of the alternating current on the frequency. Finally DC electrical characteristics were investigated as a function of temperature to determine the type of conduction mechanism that is involoved. The data has been analyzed using existing theories of high field conduction in thin dielectric films and it has been found that at different temperature ranges, the conduction mechanism varied from bulk limited Poole-Frenkel to Space Charge limited conduction. The activation energy calculation indicate that the physical processes responsible for dielectric relaxation and dc conduction are identical.