Formation of ilmenite-type single-crystalline MgTiO3 thin films by pulsed-laser deposition

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Ilmenite structure is a good playground to explore magnetism in honeycomb lattices owing to the existence of an intriguing variety of magnetism in 3d transition metal compounds. Because of the absence of magnetic ions, ilmenite-type MgTiO3 is a promising candidate for d0 transparent insulators to reveal general features of TiO6 honeycomb layers. In this study, we found an optimum growth condition to synthesize ilmenite-type single-crystalline MgTiO3 thin films on Al2O3(0001) substrates by pulsed-laser deposition. By increasing oxygen pressure from roughly 10−6 to 10−1 Torr, we obtained (0001)-oriented MgTiO3 thin films with suppression of segregation of a Mg2TiO4 phase. On the triangular lattice of Al2O3, twin-domain formation is suppressed with decreasing deposition rate, resulting in the synthesis of single-crystalline MgTiO3 thin films. The bandgap of the MgTiO3 film was evaluated to be about 4.4 eV by optical absorption spectra, which implies d0 transparent insulator.

Original languageEnglish
Article number125125
JournalAIP Advances
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Dec 1


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