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Hexagonal Close-Packed Polar-Skyrmion Lattice in Ultrathin Ferroelectric PbTiO3 Films

Yuan, S and Chen, Z and Prokhorenko, S and Nahas, Y and Bellaiche, L and Liu, C and Xu, B and Chen, L and Das, S and Martin, LW (2023) Hexagonal Close-Packed Polar-Skyrmion Lattice in Ultrathin Ferroelectric PbTiO3 Films. In: Physical Review Letters, 130 (22).

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevLett.130.226801


Polar skyrmions are topologically stable, swirling polarization textures with particlelike characteristics, which hold promise for next-generation, nanoscale logic and memory. However, the understanding of how to create ordered polar skyrmion lattice structures and how such structures respond to applied electric fields, temperature, and film thickness remains elusive. Here, using phase-field simulations, the evolution of polar topology and the emergence of a phase transition to a hexagonal close-packed skyrmion lattice is explored through the construction of a temperature-electric field phase diagram for ultrathin ferroelectric PbTiO3 films. The hexagonal-lattice skyrmion crystal can be stabilized under application of an external, out-of-plane electric field which carefully adjusts the delicate interplay of elastic, electrostatic, and gradient energies. In addition, the lattice constants of the polar skyrmion crystals are found to increase with film thickness, consistent with expectation from Kittel's law. Our studies pave the way for the development of novel ordered condensed matter phases assembled from topological polar textures and related emergent properties in nanoscale ferroelectrics.

Item Type: Journal Article
Publication: Physical Review Letters
Publisher: American Physical Society
Additional Information: The copyright for this article belongs to the Author.
Keywords: Ferroelectric films; Ferroelectricity; Film thickness; Lattice constants; Lead titanate; Nanotechnology; Phase diagrams; Titanium compounds; Topology; Ultrathin films, Field temperature; Film-thickness; Hexagonal close packed; Hexagonal close-packed; Lattice structures; Nano scale; Phase-field simulation; Skyrmion lattices; Skyrmions; Ultra-thin, Electric fields
Department/Centre: Division of Chemical Sciences > Materials Research Centre
Date Deposited: 18 Jul 2023 10:37
Last Modified: 18 Jul 2023 10:37
URI: https://eprints.iisc.ac.in/id/eprint/82461

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