Electric-field-induced local structural phenomena in Pb-based ABO3-type relaxor ferroelectrics

Boriana Mihailova*, Bernd Maier, Thomas Steilmann, Evgeniy Dul'Kin, Michael Roth

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Lead-based ABO3-type relaxors and related systems have numerous applications in modern technical devices because of their remarkably high dielectric permittivity and piezoelectric/electroelastic and electro-optic coefficients. However, lead is not desired from an environmental point of view, and to switch to alternative alkali-, Ba-, or Bi-based relaxor systems, one must understand in great detail the structural mesoscopic order and coupling processes responsible for the outstanding performance and multifunctionality of the exemplar Pb-based compounds. To elucidate the type of ferroic coupling, three relaxor compounds PbSc0.5Ta0.5O3 (PST), Pb0.78Ba0.22Sc0.5Ta0.5O3 (PST-Ba), and PbSc0.5Nb0.5O3 (PSN), were studied by polarized Raman scattering and acoustic emission at different temperatures and under an external electric field. The results reveal the coexistence of mesoscopic-scale ferroelectric and antiferroelectric coupling, which are predominantly related to B-site cations and A-site Pb cations, respectively. This suggests that the polar structural state of relaxors is frustrated ferrielectric. The presence of A-site cations with affinity to off-center is significant for the development of mesoscopic-scale antiferroelectric order coexisting with the mesoscopic-scale ferroelectric order.

Original languageAmerican English
Article numberA7
Pages (from-to)7-17
Number of pages11
JournalIEEE Transactions on Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics, and Frequency Control
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2015

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