Novel complex phenomena in ferroelectric nanocomposites


  • Louis Laurence
  • Kornev I.
  • Geneste G.
  • Dkhil B.
  • Bellaiche L.


A first-principles-based effective Hamiltonian is used to investigate finite-temperature properties of ferroelectric nanocomposites made of periodic arrays of ferroelectric nanowires embedded in a matrix formed by another ferroelectric material. Novel transitions and features related to flux-closure configurations are found. Examples include (i) a vortex core transition, that is characterized by the change of the vortex cores from being axisymmetric to exhibiting a 'broken symmetry'; (ii) translational mode of the vortex cores; (iii) striking zigzag dipolar chains along the vortex core axis; and (iv) phase-locking of ferroelectric vortices accompanied by ferroelectric antivortices. These complex phenomena are all found to coexist with a spontaneous electrical polarization aligned along the normal of the plane containing the vortices.

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