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Researchers Find Potential Sn-based Hybrid Perovskite Ferroelectric Semiconductor

Mar 13, 2020

Ferroelectricity in semiconductor materials continues to gain interest for potential applications in smart sensors, energy harvesters, human interfaces, and self-powered photoelectric devices. Recently, the ferroelectricity in organic-inorganic hybrid perovskites gained researchers’ attention owing to their prominent carrier transport properties, instinctively tunable photoresponse, and solution processability.
As expected, a series of two-dimensional (2D) layered hybrid perovskite ferroelectrics have been successfully synthesized and prominent photoelectric properties were acquired. Nevertheless, these ferroelectrics contain high concentrations of toxic Pb which threaten the human body and biological systems a potential stumbling block for their further application.

In a study published in J. Am. Chem. Soc., a research group led by Prof. LUO Junhua from Fujian Institute of Research on the Structure of Matter of the Chinese Academy of Sciences reported a potential lead-free hybrid perovskite ferroelectric semiconductor, (C4H9NH3)2(NH3CH3)2Sn3Br10.

The researchers found that this Sn-based hybrid perovskite undergoes a characteristic ferroelectric phase transition around 318 K with a relatively large spontaneous polarization of 11.76 μC cm-2. Mechanistic studies revealed that such ferroelectricity can be attributable to the synergistic effects of ordering of organic cations and stereochemically active lone-pair electrons inducing distortion of inorganic octahedral.

Besides, they observed temperature-dependent domain evolutions via polarized light microscopy and piezoresponse force microscopy, which further confirms the biaxial characteristic of (C4H9NH3)2(NH3CH3)2Sn3Br10, according to that of structure change.

This is the first example of a Sn-based hybrid perovskite semiconductor featuring ferroelectric performance. The study offers an efficient approach for exploring “green” ferroelectric semiconductors with potentially enhanced energy conversion efficiency.

 

Schematic illustration of (C4H9NH3)2(NH3CH3)2Sn3Br10 with PFM domain signals. (Image by Prof. LUO’s group) 

Contact

LUO Junhua

Fujian Institute of Research on the Structure of Matter

E-mail:

A Potential Sn-Based Hybrid Perovskite Ferroelectric Semiconductor

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