Ferroelectric domain wall p-n junctions

Jesi R. Maguire*, Conor J. McCluskey, Kristina M. Holsgrove, Ahmet Suna, Amit Kumar, Raymond G. P. McQuaid, J. Marty Gregg*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Abstract

We have used high-voltage Kelvin Probe Force Microscopy to map the spatial distribution of electrical potential, dropped along curved current-carrying conducting domain walls, in x-cut single crystal ferroelectric lithium niobate thin films. We find that in-operando potential profiles and extracted electric fields, associated with p-n junctions contained within the walls, can be fully rationalised through expected variations in wall resistivity alone. There is no need to invoke additional physics (carrier depletion zones, space-charge fields) normally associated with extrinsically doped semiconductor p-n junctions. Indeed, we argue that this should not even be expected, as inherent Fermi level differences between p- and n- regions, at the core of conventional p-n junction behaviour, cannot occur in domain walls that are surrounded by a common matrix. This is important for domain wall nanoelectronics, as such in-wall junctions will neither act as diodes nor facilitate transistors in the same way as extrinsic semiconducting systems do.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)10360–10366
Number of pages7
JournalNano Letters
Volume23
Issue number22
Early online date10 Nov 2023
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 22 Nov 2023

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