Control of polarization in bulk ferroelectrics by mechanical dislocation imprint

Marion Höfling, Xiandong Zhou, Lukas M. Riemer, Enrico Bruder, Binzhi Liu, Lin Zhou, Pedro B. Groszewicz, Fangping Zhuo, Bai Xiang Xu, More Authors

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

69 Citations (Scopus)


Defects are essential to engineering the properties of functional materials ranging from semiconductors and superconductors to ferroics. Whereas point defects have been widely exploited, dislocations are commonly viewed as problematic for functional materials and not as a microstructural tool. We developed a method for mechanically imprinting dislocation networks that favorably skew the domain structure in bulk ferroelectrics and thereby tame the large switching polarization and make it available for functional harvesting. The resulting microstructure yields a strong mechanical restoring force to revert electric field–induced domain wall displacement on the macroscopic level and high pinning force on the local level. This induces a giant increase of the dielectric and electromechanical response at intermediate electric fields in barium titanate [electric field–dependent permittivity (e33) ≈ 5800 and large-signal piezoelectric coefficient (d33*) ≈ 1890 picometers/volt]. Dislocation-based anisotropy delivers a different suite of tools with which to tailor functional materials.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)961-964
Issue number6545
Publication statusPublished - 2021


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