Strain profile and polarization enhancement in Ba0.5Sr0.5TiO3 thin films



The sensitivity of spontaneous polarization to epitaxial strain for both 10 and 50 nm thick Ba0.5Sr0.5TiO3 (BSTO) ferroelectric thin films has been studied. Crystal truncation rod (CTR) profiles in the 00L directions at different wavelengths, and grazing incidence diffraction (GID) in the 0K0 direction on a single crystal have been recorded. Modeling of the CTR data gives a detailed picture of the strain and provides clear evidence of the film out-of-plane expansion at the surface, an increase of the polarization, as well as a contraction at the interface. GID data confirm the fitting of the CTR, showing an in-plane expansion of the BSTO film at the interface and a contraction at the surface.