Boundary conditions manipulation of polar vortex domains in BiFeO3membranes via phase-field simulations

Ren Ci Peng, Xiaoxing Cheng, Bin Peng, Ziyao Zhou, Long Qing Chen, Ming Liu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Polar vortex domains have recently become an emergent research field due to the abundant physical phenomena and potential applications in high-density memories. Here, we explore the mechanisms of creating polar vortex domains in the BiFeO3 (BFO) membranes subjected to different boundary conditions using phase-field simulations. A major difference is that the vortex in membrane can be stabilized even under short-circuit electrical boundary conditions compared to vortex in other systems, such as thin film or superlattice. We found that (a) the formation of polar vortex domains at the membrane interior under bending is mainly driven by the reduction of elastic energy under short-circuit boundary condition, and the vortex chirality (namely, clockwise and counterclockwise) could be identified by n-shape and u-shape bending; (b) in the unbent open-circuit BFO membrane case, exotic trapezoid-shaped vortex nanodomains form at the terminations of 109 domain walls (DWs) and partially charged 71 DWs, which is driven by the local depolarization field and the interplay among electrostatic, elastic, and gradient and Landau energies. We also examine Kittel's law by establishing the dependence of vortex periods on the membrane thickness. These results give further understanding of the effect of boundary conditions on the formation of polar vortex domains, guiding experimental designs of vortex-based high-density memories.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number495301
JournalJournal of Physics D: Applied Physics
Issue number49
StatePublished - Dec 9 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Acoustics and Ultrasonics
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films


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