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Defect distribution along needle-shaped PrVO4 single crystals grown by the slow-cooling method

Jaroslaw Domagala 1Wojciech Paszkowicz 1Jadwiga Bak-Misiuk 1Olga Ermakova 1Hanna Dabkowska 2

1. Polish Academy of Sciences, Institute of Physics, al. Lotników 32/46, Warszawa 02-668, Poland
2. Brockhouse Institute for Materials Research, McMaster University, 1280 Main Street West, Hamilton L8S4MI, Canada


Rare earth orthovanadates (RVO4) crystallizing in the tetragonal zircon-type structure have been reported to be applicable as scintillators, as laser and optical waveguide materials, as catalysts and to be useful for remote thermometry. Applications such as laser-directed ones require the use of defect-free crystals, as discussed in refs. [1, 2]. The defect structure strongly depends on the applied growth technology as well as on the doping details. Slow cooling method is known to provide crystals of small dimension but of relatively good quality [3, 4]. A limited information on growth of PrVO4 single crystals can be found in literature, and very little is known about the nature and density of defect occurring in such crystals. Yadawa et al. [5] have concluded that the electrical conductivity of flux-grown PrVO4 single crystal is due to the point defects presence in the crystal. Nakahara et al. [6] have reported that the floating-zone-grown crystals do not contain macroscopic defects.
Spatially resolved X-ray diffraction techniques provide useful quantitative information on the defect structure distribution for single crystals, thin films or nanowires. In this work, general information on the defect structure is derived from reciprocal lattice-point maps at several selected points. Details of the defect nature and distribution along the crystals are obtained with the use of mapping of triple-axis rocking curves and of 2θ/ω diffraction curves.
Analysis of the obtained data permitted to extract the information on one-dimensional distribution of the lattice plane deformation, mosaic structure as well as on the lattice parameters variation in undoped and Yb-doped PrVO4 crystals. The samples are typically single crystalline, some of them are built from several blocks with misorientation angles up to several arcmin. There is no particular difference between the defect nature of undoped and doped crystals. The full width at half maximum (FWHM) value at the central part of the crystals is as low as about 10-12 arcsec. There is a tendency of FWHM to increase at the crystal tips, demonstrating that the crystals are less perfect at these regions. The analysis for (100) and (010) crystal faces shows that there is a significant difference between their curvatures.

[1] J.B. LeBret, Defect Characterization of Yttrium Orthovanadate, Master Thesis, Washington State University, School of Mechanical and Materials Engineering (Pullman, WA, 2004).
[2] G.Yu. Orlova, V.I. Vlasov, Yu.D. Zavartsev, A.I. Zagumennyi, I.I. Kalashnikova, S.A. Kutovoi, V.S. Naumov, A.A. Sirotkin, Quant. Electron. 42, 208 (2012)
[3] B.K.Tanner, S.H. Smith, J. Cryst. Growth 30, 323–326 (1975) 
[4] S.H. Smith, G. Garton, B.K. Tanner, D. Midgley, J. Mater. Sci. 13, 620 (1978)
[5] Y.P. Yadava, R.A. Singh, B.M. Wanklyn, J. Mater. Sci. Lett. 4, 224 (1985)
[6] T. Nakahara, M. Higuchi, J. Takahashi, T. Ogawa, S. Wada, J. Jpn. Assoc. Cryst. Growth 33, 195 (2006)


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Presentation: Poster at 17th International Conference on Crystal Growth and Epitaxy - ICCGE-17, General Session 5, by Wojciech Paszkowicz
See On-line Journal of 17th International Conference on Crystal Growth and Epitaxy - ICCGE-17

Submitted: 2013-05-08 00:38
Revised:   2013-05-08 00:38