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Ferroelectricity in Ultrathin Perovskite Films

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Science  11 Jun 2004:
Vol. 304, Issue 5677, pp. 1650-1653
DOI: 10.1126/science.1098252

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Abstract

Understanding the suppression of ferroelectricity in perovskite thin films is a fundamental issue that has remained unresolved for decades. We report a synchrotron x-ray study of lead titanate as a function of temperature and film thickness for films as thin as a single unit cell. At room temperature, the ferroelectric phase is stable for thicknesses down to 3 unit cells (1.2 nanometers). Our results imply that no thickness limit is imposed on practical devices by an intrinsic ferroelectric size effect.

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