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Recent studies by a number of research groups have shown that the structure of epitaxial BiFeO3 (BFO) films changes drastically as a function of substrate-induced biaxial compression, with the crystal structure changing from one being nearly rhombohedral (R-like) to one being nearly tetragonal (T-like), where the “T-like” structure is characterized by a highly enhanced c/a ratio of out-of-plane c to in-plane a lattice parameters. In this work, we show that the critical compressive strain σc necessary to induce this transition can be reduced significantly by substituting 10% Ba for Bi [Bi0.9Ba0.1FeO3−δ (BBFO)] and that the “T-like” phase in both BBFO and BFO is stable up to the decomposition temperatures of the films in air. Furthermore, our results show that the BBFO solid solution shows clear ferromagnetic properties in contrast to its undoped BFO counterpart.
A metal-induced crystallization (MIC) technique was used to produce large-grain poly-crystalline silicon. Two sets of samples were prepared by first sputtering Al onto glass substrates. For one set of samples, hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) was sputtered on top of the Al without breaking the vacuum. For the second set, the samples were taken out of the vacuum chamber and exposed to the atmosphere to grow a very thin layer of native aluminum oxide before sputter depositing the a-Si:H. Both sets of samples were then annealed at temperatures between 400 and 525 °C for 40 min. X-ray diffraction patterns confirmed the crystallization of the samples. Scanning Auger microanalysis was used to confirm that the a-Si:H and Al layers exchanged positions in this structure during the crystallization process. Auger mapping revealed the formation of large grain poly-silicon (10–20 μm). A model is proposed to explain how the crystallization process progresses with anneal temperature.
A laser-based technique was used to deposit Fe3O4 on A319Al, producing an Fe3O4/Al reaction composite coating. Scanning Auger microscopy indicated a reaction between oxide particles and aluminum-forming Fe–Al intermetallic compounds, Al2O3, and various intermediate reaction products. Analysis of the coating region, fractured in vacuo, indicated substantial toughness of the material due to extremely refined microstructure with finely distributed oxide and intermetallic particles and strong interfacial bonding between particles and the matrix. Mechanical properties of the coating were evaluated by nanoindentation techniques employing both Berkovich and cube-corner indenters. Hardness and elastic modulus values were found to be uniform at 1.24 and 76 GPa, respectively. No radial cracking was observed for either the Berkovich or cube-corner indenters. These results indicate that the laser-induced rapidly solidified composite material is tough and fracture resistant.
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