We present a novel method for creating damage-free ferroelectric nanostructures with a focused ion beam milling machine. Using a standard e-beam photoresist followed by a dilute acid wash, nanostructures ranging in size from 1 mu m down to 250 nm were created in a 90 nm thick lead zirconate titanate ( PZT) wafer. Transmission electron microscopy and piezoresponse force microscopy ( PFM) confirmed that the surfaces of the nanostructures remained damage free during fabrication, and showed no gallium implantation, and that there was no degradation of ferroelectric properties. In fact DC strain loops, obtained using PFM, demonstrated that the nanostructures have a higher piezoresponse than unmilled films. As the samples did not have any top hard mask, the method presented is unique as it allows for imaging of the top surface to understand edge effects in well-defined nanostructures. In addition, as no post-mill annealing was necessary, it facilitates investigation of nanoscale domain mechanisms without process-induced artefacts.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering
- Mechanical Engineering
- Mechanics of Materials
- Materials Science(all)