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Structural phase transitions in the geometric ferroelectric LaTa O4

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Author(s)

Grant W. Howieson, Karuna K. Mishra, Alexandra S. Gibbs, Ram S. Katiyar, James F. Scott, Finlay D. Morrison, Michael Carpenter

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Abstract

The recent report of an intermediate incommensurately modulated orthorhombic phase in LaTaO4 has prompted a re-examination of the phase transition sequence in LaTaO4 as a function of temperature. With falling temperature, the sequence of phases examined is (orthorhombic) Cmc21(C)↔Cmc21(IC)↔(monoclinic)P21/c, with C and IC denoting commensurate and incommensurate phases, respectively. The orthorhombic to monoclinic transition, Tm-o, is a first order reconstructive transition occurring at 440 K and TIC-C is a first-order displacive transition occurring at 500-530 K. Strain and elasticity data confirm a first-order transition between the basic and modulated Cmc21 phases, with similarities to the isostructural fluoride BaMnF4. A Raman spectroscopic study of the LaTaO4 phase transition indicates that the IC-C phase transition is driven by a soft zone-boundary phonon (unstable) of the commensurate orthorhombic (Cmc21) phase. The soft phonon is found to appear (underdamped) above 443 K and vanishes (overdamped) around 528 K. A large supercell of the monoclinic phase below Tm-o is proposed based on the Raman spectroscopic results.
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Original languageEnglish
Article number014119
Number of pages12
JournalPhysical Review. B, Condensed matter and materials physics
Volume103
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 29 Jan 2021

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