3 years ago

Dipolar Electromechanical Strain in Silicon Investigated by Scanning Probe Microscopy.

Qingfeng Zhu, Dongliang Shan, Jiangyu Li, Shuhong Xie, Junxi Yu, Tingting Jia, Ehsan Nasr Esfahani

Piezoresponse force microscopy (PFM) is a powerful tool widely used to characterize piezoelectricity and ferroelectricity at the nanoscale. However, it is necessary to distinguish microscopic mechanisms between piezoelectricity and non-piezoelectric contributions measured by PFM. In this work, we systematically investigate the first and second harmonic apparent piezoresponses of silicon wafer in both vertical and lateral modes, and we show that it exhibits apparent electromechanical response under a charged probe that arises from induced electrochemical dipoles. As a result, the electromechanical response measured is dominated by the second harmonic quadratic response in vertical mode, and its polarity can be switched by the DC voltage with evolving coercive field and maximum amplitude, in sharp contrast with typical ferroelectric materials we used as control. The ionic activity in silicon is also confirmed by scanning thermo-ionic microscopy measurement, and this work points toward a set of methods to distinguish true piezoelectricity from the apparent ones.

Publisher URL: http://arxiv.org/abs/1801.10238

DOI: arXiv:1801.10238v1

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