Scanning Tunneling Microscopy of Electrodeposited Ceramic Superlattices

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Science  18 Dec 1992:
Vol. 258, Issue 5090, pp. 1918-1921
DOI: 10.1126/science.258.5090.1918


Cleaved cross sections of nanometer-scale ceramic superlattices fabricated from materials of the lead-thallium-oxygen system were imaged in the scanning tunneling microscope (STM). The apparent height differences between the layers were attributed to composition-dependent variations in local electrical properties. For a typical superlattice, the measured modulation wavelength was 10.6 nanometers by STM and 10.8 nanometers by x-ray diffraction. The apparent height profile for potentiostatically deposited superlattices was more square than that for galvanostatically deposited samples. These results suggest that the composition follows the applied potential more closely than it follows the applied current. The x-ray diffraction pattern of a superlattice produced under potential control had satellites out to the fourth order around the (420) Bragg reflection.