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COVER ARTICLE

Efficient and stable blue perovskite light emitting diodes based on defect passivation
Wu Hai-Yan, Tang Jian-Xin, Li Yan-Qing
2020, 69 (13): 138502. doi: 10.7498/aps.69.20200566
Abstract +
Solution-processable metal halide perovskites materials have many advantages, such as adjustable band gap, high photoluminescence quantum yield (PLQY), high color purity, high carrier mobility, low temperature solution process, excellent charge transport property and so on. These make them potential application in the display field. In the past few years, the device performance of perovskite light emitting devices (PeLEDs) have been greatly improved by manipulating the perovskite microstructures through various strategies, such as stoichiometry control, dimensional engineering, defect passivation and so on. At present, except for blue PeLEDs, the external quantum efficiencies (EQEs) over 20% have been achieved for green, red, and near-infrared PeLEDs. The low efficiency of blue PeLEDs is retarding their potential applications in full-color display and solid-state lighting. The main reasons in blue PeLEDs are the poor film coverage of blue perovskite materials and the spectral instability during device operation. In order to improve the quality of perovskite film and device performance, the quasi two-dimensional perovskite materials phenylethylammonium cesium lead bromide chloride (PEAxCsPbBr3–yCly) are used as the main perovskite emission material, by partially replacing Br with Cl to enlarge their bandgap to achieve the blue emission. The Lewis base polyethyleneglycol (PEG) is introduced to passivate the surface trapping defects and improve perovskite film coverage. The potassium bromide (KBr) is introduced to reduce perovskite grain size, suppress mobile ion migration and exhibit excellent spectral stability. Dual additives PEG and KBr are incorporated into the quasi-2D blue perovskite for inhibiting the nonradiative losses by passivating the traps in the perovskite films. Eventually, the PEAxCsPbBr3–yCly + PEG + KBr based blue PeLEDs with the emission peak of 488 nm are accompanied, which maximum brightness, current efficiency, and external quantum efficiency reached 1049 cd·m–2, of 5.68 cd·A–1, and of 4.6%, respectively, with high color purity (the Commission Internationale de L'Eclairage (CIE) chromaticity coordinates is (0.0747, 0.2570)) and the narrow full width at half maximum (FWHM) of 20 nm. Compare to the devices without additives, the efficiency has increased by nearly 3 times. Furthermore, the devices also show better spectral stability and operation lifetime. This work provides an effective method of blue PeLEDs toward the practical applications.

SPECIAL TOPIC—Dielectric materials and physics

  

COVER ARTICLE

Effect of manganese doping on ferroelectric and piezoelectric properties of KNbO3 and (K0.5Na0.5)NbO3 lead-free ceramics
Xu Ze, Lou Lu-Yao, Zhao Chun-Lin, Tang Hao-Cheng, Liu Yi-Xuan, Li Zhao, Qi Xiao-Mei, Zhang Bo-Ping, Li Jing-Feng, Gong Wen, Wang Ke
2020, 69 (12): 127705. doi: 10.7498/aps.69.20200277
Abstract +
Potassium sodium niobate ((K0.5Na0.5)NbO3)-based lead-free piezoelectric ceramics are excellent ferroelectric materials and have been demonstrated to have many practical applications. Recent studies have revealed that chemical doping plays a crucial role in optimizing the electromechanical coupling properties of (K0.5Na0.5)NbO3-based piezoelectric ceramics. In this paper, MnO2 is doped into potassium niobate (KNbO3) and (K0.5Na0.5)NbO3 piezoelectric ceramics prepared by the conventional solid-state reaction method. The influences of doped Mn cation on KNbO3 and (K0.5Na0.5)NbO3 piezoelectric ceramics including microstructure and macroscopic electrical properties are systematically investigated. The doping effects of Mn cation on the KNbO3 and (K0.5Na0.5)NbO3 piezoelectric ceramics are significantly different from each other. For the Mn-doped KNbO3 piezoelectric ceramics, the sizes of ferroelectric domains are reduced. Meanwhile, the diffused orthorhombic-tetragonal phase transition is observed, which is accompanied by reducing dielectric loss and Curie temperature, and broadening vibration peaks in Raman spectrum. It is known that the oxygen vacancy can be formed to compensate for the charges created by the acceptor doping of Mn into the B site of perovskite, and thus forming a defect dipole with the acceptor center. From the ferroelectric measurement, a double hysteresis loop (P-E curve) and a recoverable electric-field-induced strain due to the formation of defect dipole are observed. On the contrary, for the Mn-doped (K0.5Na0.5)NbO3 piezoelectric ceramics, the sizes of ferroelectric domains are not reduced. Meanwhile, the Curie temperature and vibration peaks in Raman spectrum are not changed. A rectangular hysteresis loop (P-E curve) and an unrecoverable electric-field-induced strain are observed in the ferroelectric measurement. The difference between these systems might originate from the greater ionic disorder and lattice distortion in (K0.5Na0.5)NbO3 piezoelectric ceramics. The difference in ionic radius between Na+ and K+ can affect the migration and distribution of oxygen vacancies, which makes it difficult to form stable defect dipoles in the Mn-doped (K0.5Na0.5)NbO3 piezoelectric ceramics. The results will serve as an important reference for preparing high-performance (K0.5Na0.5)NbO3-based piezoelectric ceramics via chemical doping.

SPECIAL TOPIC—Majorana in condensed matter

  

COVER ARTICLE

Emergent vortex Majorana zero mode in iron-based superconductors
Kong Ling-Yuan, Ding Hong
2020, 69 (11): 110301. doi: 10.7498/aps.69.20200717
Abstract +
During the recent years, the iron-based superconductors with a topological band structure have attracted intensive attention from the science community as a new and promising platform for emerging Majorana zero modes in their vortex core. These topological iron-based superconductors possess all of the desirable properties, i.e. single material, high-Tc superconductivity, strong electron-electron correlation and topological band structure, thus successfully avoiding the difficulties suffered by previous Majorana platforms, such as intrinsic topological superconductors and multiple types of proximitized heterostructures. So far, one has observed pristine vortex Majorana zero modes in several different compounds of iron-based superconductors. The systematic studies performed on those systems show that the vortex Majorana zero modes are quite evident experimentally and very clear theoretically, leading to a bright future in applications. The vortex cores of iron-based superconductors can become one of the major candidates for exploring topological quantum computing in the future. In this review article, we will focus on Fe(Te, Se) single crystal, to introduce the original ideas and research progress of the new emerging “iron home” for Majorana zero modes. Having elabrated the basic band structures and the experimental facts of the observed vortex zero modes in Fe(Te, Se), we will systematically summarize the main observations and fundamental physics of vortex Majorana zero modes in Fe(Te, Se). First of all, with the help of the observed behavior of Majorana wavefunction and quasiparticle poisioning, we will analyze the emerging mechanism of vortex Majorana zero modes in Fe(Te, Se). Then we will elaborate the measurements on Majorana symmetry and topological nature of vortex Majorana zero modes, assisted by several existing Majorana theories. After that, we will switch our view angle from quantum physics to quantum engineering, and comprehensively analyze the fate of vortex Majorana zero modes in a real material under a real environment, which may benefit the potential engineering applications in the future. This review article follows the physical properties of vortex Majorana zero modes, and emphasizes the link between theories and experiments. Our goal is to bridge the gap between the classical Majorana theories and the new emerging Majorana platform in iron-based superconductors, and help the readers to understand the experimental observations of the newly discovered “iron home” for Majoranas.

COVER ARTICLE

Preparation and properties for X-ray scintillation screen based on ZnO:In nanorod arrays
Li Qian-Li, Hu Ya-Hua, Ma Yi-Fan, Sun Zhi-Xiang, Wang Min, Liu Xiao-Lin, Zhao Jing-Tai, Zhang Zhi-Jun
2020, 69 (10): 102902. doi: 10.7498/aps.69.20200282
Abstract +
X-ray scintillation screens as the core component of X-ray imaging detectors have widespread applications in the medical imaging, security inspection, high energy physics, radiochemistry, and so on. For a long time, the development of X-ray scintillation screen mainly focuses on improving the light yield in order to enhance its detection efficiency. However, a novel tendency has recently emerged for ultrafast time performance of the X-ray imaging detector. The indium doping zinc oxide (ZnO:In) with high radiation hardness, higher light yield(>10000 photons/MeV) and subnanosecond decay time is a promising scintillation material for ultrafast detections. In order to satisfy the requirements of X-ray scintillation screens with ultrafast and high-spatial-resolution in the existing and upcoming high energy physics experiments, the ZnO:In nanorod arrays have been prepared on a 100-nm-thick ZnO-seeded substrate by hydrothermal reaction method and then treated by hydrogen plasma in present work. The results of SEM demonstrate the average diameter and length of the ZnO:In nanorods are about 0.5 and 12 μm, respectively. The XRD shows the ZnO:In nanorods are highly aligned perpendicular to the substrate along c-axis direction. The X-ray excited luminescence spectra show that two luminescence bands are observed, i.e. an ultraviolet emission peak located at about 395 nm and a visible emission band at 450–750 nm. It is particularly important to point out that hydrogen plasma treatment can enhance the ultraviolet emission of ZnO:In nanorod arrays and suppress its visible emission. The reason is attributed to the formation of shallow donors through hydrogen entering the ZnO and the combination of VO and Oi. In addition, the fluorescence decay times of the ultraviolet and visible emissions for the ZnO:In nanorod arrays are subnanosecond and nanosecond, respectively, satisfying the demand of the fast X-ray imaging. The spatial resolution of ZnO:In nanorod arrays has been characterized in X-ray imaging beamline at the Shanghai Synchrotron Radiation Facility. Under excitation of the X-ray beam with the energy of 20 keV, a system spatial resolution of 1.5 μm could be achieved by using an 12 μm thickness ZnO:In nanorod arrays as the scintillation screen, which is exceeded the highest level had ever been reported on ZnO:In nanorod arrays scintillation screen. In conclusion, this present work shows that it is a feasible solution for X-ray detection and imaging with high temporal and spatial resolution by using ZnO:In nanorod arrays as the X-ray scintillation screen.

INVITED REVIEW

  

COVER ARTICLE

High resolution imaging based on photo-emission electron microscopy excited by deep ultraviolet laser
Lü Hao-Chang, Zhao Yun-Chi, Yang Guang, Dong Bo-Wen, Qi Jie, Zhang Jing-Yan, Zhu Zhao-Zhao, Sun Yang, Yu Guang-Hua, Jiang Yong, Wei Hong-Xiang, Wang Jing, Lu Jun, Wang Zhi-Hong, Cai Jian-Wang, Shen Bao-Gen, Yang Feng, Zhang Shen-Jin, Wang Shou-Guo
2020, 69 (9): 096801. doi: 10.7498/aps.69.20200083
Abstract +
Magnetic imaging technology based on photo-emission electron microscopy (PEEM) has become an important and powerful tool for observing the magnetic domain in spintronics. The PEEM can get access to real-time imaging with high spatial resolution and is greatly sensitive to the spectroscopic information directly from the magnetic films and surfaces through photoemission process with variable excitation sources. Moreover, the breakthrough in the deep ultraviolet (DUV) laser technology makes it possible to realize domain imaging without the limitation of synchrotron radiation facilities or the direct excitation of photoelectrons due to the high enough photon energy of the source in the current threshold excitation study. In this review article, the deep ultraviolet photo-emission electron microscopy system is first introduced briefly. Then, a detailed study of the magnetic domain observation for the surface of L10-FePt films by the DUV-PEEM technique is presented, where a spatial resolution as high as 43.2 nm is successfully achieved. The above results clearly indicate that the DUV-PEEM reaches a level equivalent to the level reached by X-ray photoemission imaging technique. Finally, a series of recent progress of perpendicular FePt magnetic thin films obtained by the DUV-PEEM technique is provided in detail. For example, a stepped Cr seeding layer is used to form the large-area epitaxial FePt films with (001) and (111) two orientations, where magnetic linear dichroism (MLD) with large asymmetry is observed in the transition area of two phases. The signal of MLD is 4.6 times larger than that of magnetic circular dichroism. These results demonstrate that the magnetic imaging technology based on DUV-PEEM with excellent resolution ability will potentially become an important method to study magnetic materials in the future.

SPECIAL TOPIC—Statistical physics and complex systems

  

COVER ARTICLE

Surface-textured polymer microspheres generated through interfacial instabilities of microfluidic droplets for cell capture
Wang Yue-Tong, Shang Luo-Ran, Zhao Yuan-Jin
2020, 69 (8): 084701. doi: 10.7498/aps.69.20200362
Abstract +
Polymer microparticles with various compositions and morphologies have recently received much attention. Their surface-roughness significantly affects the physical and chemical properties, which especially counts in regulating the interaction between biological materials and living systems. In this paper, we design a polystyrene microsphere with controllable surface textures. At first, a microfluidic device is used to generate droplets with uniform size containing the hydrophobic polymer and a co-surfactant. During the volatilization of the organic solvent, the shrinking droplets appear to be unstable at the interface. Thus, the surface area increases spontaneously, and microspheres with wrinkles on the surface are obtained after being solidified. The results show that tuning the concentration of the co-surfactant and the rate of solvent evaporation can effectively regulate the surface roughness of the microspheres. Circulating tumor cell capture experiments reveal that this textured structure can facilitate the cell adhesion and increase the number of the captured cells. These features indicate that the coarse microspheres possess a promising application prospect in the field of biomedical analysis.

COVER ARTICLE

Synthesization, characterization, and highly efficient electrocatalysis of chain-like Pt-Ni nanoparticles
Xu Ke-Xin, Xia Tian-Yu, Zhou Liang, Li Shun-Fang, Cai Bin, Wang Rong-Ming, Guo Hai-Zhong
2020, 69 (7): 076101. doi: 10.7498/aps.69.20200343
Abstract +
Fuel cells are one of the promising energy-conversion devices due to their high efficiency and zero emission. Despite tremendous research works in past decades, there remains a tough challenge in realizing the commercial applications of fuel cell technologies. Therefore, the development of highly efficient and stable fuel cell electrocatalyst is the top priority for practical fuel cells. As we all know, the small-size nanoparticles always have high specific surface area, which can provide more active sites to enhance the catalytic activity, while the one-dimensional nanowires usually own high structural stability. It may provide a possibility for the design of a novel bimetal Pt-based alloy nanostructure by combining the structural superiority of both, which can maintain the high stability and maximize the catalytic activity at the same time. Driven by these purposes, a novel nanostructure constructed by Pt-Ni alloy nanoparticles with a one-dimensional chain structure was designed to balance the contradiction between the activity and stability due to the size effects (the smaller the size, the higher the activity, and the worse the stability of the nanocatalyst; and vice versa). Here, a simple one-step solvothermal method has been adopted to produce the novel nanostructures constructed by the chain-like Pt-Ni nanoparticles (Pt-Ni CNPs) with Pt-rich crystal faces and alloy nature. The structure, component and catalysis were investigated by the combination of X-ray diffraction, transmission electron microscopy, X-ray photoemission spectra, and electrochemical measurements. The results show that the as-synthesized Pt-Ni CNP is constructed from a nanowire (with a diameter of about 3 nm and a length of several hundred nanometers) and the nanoparticles (with an average diameter of about 10 nm). This nanostructure is cleverly integrated the structural advantages of one-dimensional nanowires and zero-dimensional nanoparticles, which can significantly enhance the catalytic activity and stability for the methanol oxidation reaction (MOR) in acidic environment. Specially, the mass activity and specific activity of as-prepared Pt-Ni CNPs are 5.7 and 7.6 times higher than those of the commercial Pt/C, respectively. After 1000 cycles of cyclic voltammetry (CV) measurement, Pt-Ni CNPs still retain 91.2% of the specific activity, while the commercial Pt/C undergoes a drastic loss of MOR activities, retaining only 4.4% of the initial activity. It is particularly noteworthy that this nanostructure of Pt-Ni CNP solves the problem of agglomeration of nanoparticle catalysts in the reaction, and provides a new approach to obtain Pt-based nanocatalysts with high catalytic activity and stability at the same time. Our finding will provide insight into more rational designs of Pt-based bimetallic nanocatalysts with one-dimensional architectures, which is expected to promote the further development and large-scale industrial application of the direct methanol fuel.

COVER ARTICLE

First-principles study of Ca5N4 at high pressure
Shi Xu-Han, Li Hai-Yan, Yao Zhen, Liu Bing-Bing
2020, 69 (6): 067101. doi: 10.7498/aps.69.20191808
Abstract +
Recent studies have shown that introducing metal elements into nitrogen matrix can induce more stable poly-nitrogen structures than the pure nitrogen phase due to the ionic interaction between metal elements and nitrogen matrix. Many types of poly-nitrogen structures have been reported by using the alkaline earth metal elements (M = Be, Mg, Ca, Sr, Ba) as the coordinate elements. For example, the one-dimensional (1D) infinite armchair poly-nitrogen chain (N) structure and N6 ring structure are obtained for the MN4 and MN3 chemical stoichiometry, respectively. Interestingly, the stabilities of theses MNx structures are enhanced 2–3 times compared with that of the pure nitrogen. Therefore, exploring the novel and stable poly-nitrogen structure by introducing alkaline earth metal elements under high pressure is a great significant job. As an alkaline earth element, Ca is abundant in the earth. Its ionization energy (I1 = 590 kJ/mol) is far lower than that of Be (900 kJ/mol) and Mg (738 kJ/mol), which means that Ca can form calcium nitrides more easily. Zhu et al. (Zhu S, Peng F, Liu H, Majumdar A, Gao T, Yao Y 2016Inorg. Chem. 55  7550) proposed that the Ca-N system can obtain poly-nitrogen structures under high pressure, such as CaN4 structure with armchair nitrogen chain, CaN5 and CaN3 consisting of pentazolate “N5” and benzene-like “N6” anions. These poly-nitrogen structures have potential applications in the field of high energy density materials. Here, we report the prediction of Ca-N system at 100 GPa by using particle swarm optimization algorithm technique for crystal structure prediction. A new thermal stable phase with P 21/c-Ca5N4 space group is found at 100 GPa, which enriches the phase of Ca-N system under high pressure. The dynamic stability and mechanical stability of new phase are confirmed by phono dispersion spectrum and elastic constant calculations. The electron localization function analysis shows that the nitrogen atoms in P 21/c-Ca5N4 are bonded by N—N single bond and electron transfer from Ca atom to N atom enables Ca5N4 to serve as an ionic-bonding interaction structure. Band structure calculation shows that the Ca5N4 has a semiconductor structure with a direct band gap of 1.447 eV. The PDOS calculation shows the valence band near Fermi energy is mainly contributed by N_p electrons, while the conduction band is mainly contributed by Ca_d electrons, indicating that electrons are transferred from Ca atom to N atom. Bader calculation shows that each N atom obtains 1.26e from Ca atom in P 21/c-Ca5N4. The Raman spectrum and X-ray diffraction spectrum are calculated and detailed Raman vibration modes are identified, which provides theoretical guidance for experimental synthesis.

COVER ARTICLE

Magnetotransport properties and stress control of HgCdTe thin film
Zhang Song-Ran, He Dai-Hua, Tu Hua-Yao, Sun yan, Kang Ting-Ting, Dai Ning, Chu Jun-Hao, Yu Guo-Lin
2020, 69 (5): 057301. doi: 10.7498/aps.69.20191330
Abstract +
${n_{\rm{s}}} = 1.25 \times {10^{16}}\;{{\rm{m}}^{ - 2}}$. Subsequently, we scan the voltage from 200 V to –200 V continuously in different magnetic fields. Two phenomena with different characteristics are observed. It is found that the resistance changes linearly with stress at zero field while an SdH oscillation-like behavior occurs at high field. We attribute such a difference to the existence of two conductive channels: one is the bulk material and the other is the two-dimensional electron gas. It is also noteworthy that the topological phase in our sample cannot be determined because the quantum Hall conductance is polluted by the conductance of bulk material. In conclusion, our results show that it is an effective way to use the PZT to tune the stress and this method can also be applied to the research of other materials.">In recent years, the research on topological materials, including topological insulator and topological semimetal, has received a lot of attention in condensed matter physics. HgCdTe, widely used in infrared detection, also holds huge potential in this field. It has been reported that the strained thin Hg0.865Cd0.135Te can realize topological insulator phase by using a CdZnTe substrate. However, the stress caused by changing substrate has great limitations. For example, the stress cannot be changed once the sample has been grown. Hence, we try to use a piezoceramics (PZT) instead to implement the stress and control the properties of HgCdTe. The main purpose of our experiment is to verify its validity. As is well known, the band structure of Hg1–xCdxTe can be precisely controlled by changing the content of Cd. When x lies between 0 and 0.165, HgCdTe features an inverted band structure, which is the premise of realizing topological phase. In this work, an inversion layer is induced on a single crystal grown HgCdTe bulk material by anodic oxidation, whose content of Cd is confirmed to be 0.149 by using XRD. Then the sample is thinned and attached to a PZT, which the tuning of stress is realized by applying a voltage to. Ohmic contacts are realized by indium in van der Pauw configuration. All measurements are carried out by using an Oxford Instruments 4He cryostat with magnetic field applied perpendicularly to the sample plane. At 1.5 K and zero voltage, an evident SdH oscillation is observed. By fitting the linear relationship between filling factor and the reciprocal of magnetic field, the concentration is obtained to be ${n_{\rm{s}}} = 1.25 \times {10^{16}}\;{{\rm{m}}^{ - 2}}$. Subsequently, we scan the voltage from 200 V to –200 V continuously in different magnetic fields. Two phenomena with different characteristics are observed. It is found that the resistance changes linearly with stress at zero field while an SdH oscillation-like behavior occurs at high field. We attribute such a difference to the existence of two conductive channels: one is the bulk material and the other is the two-dimensional electron gas. It is also noteworthy that the topological phase in our sample cannot be determined because the quantum Hall conductance is polluted by the conductance of bulk material. In conclusion, our results show that it is an effective way to use the PZT to tune the stress and this method can also be applied to the research of other materials.

COVER ARTICLE

Measurement of magnetic penetration depth in superconducting films by two-coil mutual inductance technique
Zhang Ruo-Zhou, Qin Ming-Yang, Zhang Lu, You Li-Xing, Dong Chao, Sha Peng, Yuan Jie, Jin Kui
2020, 69 (4): 047401. doi: 10.7498/aps.69.20191758
Abstract +
The magnetic penetration depth (λ) of a superconductor is an important parameter which connects the macroscopic electrodynamics with the microscopic mechanism of superconductivity. High-accuracy measurement of λ is of great significance for revealing the pairing mechanism of superconductivity and exploring the applications of superconductors. Among various methods used to measure λ of superconducting films, the two-coil mutual inductance (MI) technique has been widely adopted due to its high precision and simplicity. In this paper, we start with introducing the principle of MI technique and pointing out that its accuracy is mainly limited by the uncertainties in the geometric parameters (e.g. the distance between two coils) and the leakage flux around the film edge. On this basis, we build a homemade transmission-type MI device with a delicate design to achieve high-accuracy. Two coils are fixed by a single-crystal sapphire block machined with high precisions to minimize the uncertainty in geometry. As a result, the reproducibility in induced voltage measured with sample remounted is better than 4%. Besides, the flux leakage around the film edge is accurately determined by measuring a thick Nb film and Nb foils. The voltage induced by leakage flux is only around 1% of that measured in the normal state. Therefore, the absolute value of λ can be accurately extracted after flux leakage subtraction and normalization. It is shown that the error of the measured λ is less than 10% for a typical superconducting film with a thickness of 100 nm and a penetration depth of 150 nm. Furthermore, the performance of our apparatus is tested on epitaxial NbN films with thickness of 6.5 nm. The results show that the low temperature variation of superfluid density is well described by the dirty s-wave BCS theory, and at temperatures close to Tc, the superfluid density decrease drastically, owing to the Berezinski-Kosterlitz-Thouless transition transition. Moreover, the zero-temperature magnetic penetration depth and the superconducting energy gap extracted from the fitting parameters are both consistent with the reported values. Our device provides an ideal platform for carrying out detailed studies of the dependence of λ on temperature, chemical composition and epitaxial strain, etc. It could also be utilized to characterize other parameters of superconductor such as the critical current density, and when combined with the ionic liquid gating technique, our device offers an efficient route for revealing the microscopic mechanism of superconductivity.
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