Formation and Stability of Ferroelectric BaTi2O5


  • J. Nino—contributing editor

  • This work was financially supported by EPSRC.

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BaTi2O5 (BT2) is thermodynamically stable over a very narrow temperature range between 1220° and 1230°C: a modification to the BaO–TiO2 phase diagram is proposed. This thermodynamic stability was shown by constructing a time–temperature transformation diagram for the decomposition of BT2. Once formed, BT2 appears to be stable indefinitely at 1220°–1230°C; at higher temperatures, the decomposition rate increases with temperature; at lower temperatures, the decomposition rate increases with decreasing temperature and passes through a maximum at ∼1200°C; below ∼1150°C, BT2 has long-lived kinetic stability. Kinetic considerations show a nucleation and growth mechanism for decomposition, with a nucleation induction period that is very temperature dependent. BT2 can be prepared by various routes, including solid-state reaction of oxides below ∼1100°C; because it is metastable at all temperatures other than 1220°–1230°C, its formation is an example of Ostwald's rule of successive reactions. Discrepancies in the literature concerning the reported stability range of BT2 can be explained by the complex dependence on temperature and time of both its formation and decomposition, for both of which, the nucleation stage is rate limiting.