• The infared optical properties of Sr2RuO4 and SmTiO3 including an object-oriented resistivity interface /

      Hildebrand, Mylo George.; Department of Physics (Brock University, 1999-05-21)
      The perovskite crystal structure is host to many different materials from insulating to superconducting providing a diverse range of intrinsic character and complexity. A better fundamental description of these materials in terms of their electronic, optical and magnetic properties undoubtedly precedes an effective realization of their application potential. SmTiOa, a distorted perovskite has a strongly localized electronic structure and undergoes an antiferromagnetic transition at 50 K in its nominally stoichiometric form. Sr2Ru04 is a layered perovskite superconductor (ie. Tc % 1 K) bearing the same structure as the high-tem|>erature superconductor La2_xSrrCu04. Polarized reflectance measurements were carried out on both of these materials revealing several interesting features in the far-infrared range of the spectrum. In the case of SmTiOa, although insulating, evidence indicates the presence of a finite background optical conductivity. As the temperature is lowered through the ordering temperature a resonance feature appears to narrow and strengthen near 120 cm~^ A nearby phonon mode appears to also couple to this magnetic transition as revealed by a growing asymmetry in the optica] conductivity. Experiments on a doped sample with a greater itinerant character and lower Neel temperature = 40 K also indicate the presence of this strongly temperature dependent mode even at twice the ordering temperature. Although the mode appears to be sensitive to the magnetic transition it is unclear whether a magnon assignment is appropriate. At very least, evidence suggests an interesting interaction between magnetic and electronic excitations. Although Sr2Ru04 is highly anisotropic it is metallic in three-dimensions at low temperatures and reveals its coherent transport in an inter-plane Drude-like component to the highest temperatures measured (ie. 90 K). An extended Drude analysis is used to probe the frequency dependent scattering character revealing a peak in both the mass enhancement and scattering rate near 80 cm~* and 100 cm~* respectively. All of these experimental observations appear relatively consistent with a Fermi-liquid picture of charge transport. To supplement the optical measurements a resistivity station was set up with an event driven object oriented user interface. The program controls a Keithley Current Source, HP Nano-Voltmeter and Switching Unit as well as a LakeShore Temperature Controller in order to obtain a plot of the Resistivity as a function of temperature. The system allows for resistivity measurements ranging from 4 K to 290 K using an external probe or between 0.4 K to 295 K using a Helium - 3 Cryostat. Several materials of known resistivity have confirmed the system to be robust and capable of measuring metallic samples distinguishing features of several fiQ-cm.
    • Systematic studies of the effect of pressure on magnetic and electronic properties of La2/3Ca1/3MnO3 thin films with various thicknesses /

      Jacob, Sarkis Y.; Department of Physics (Brock University, 1999-05-21)
      Interest in mixed-valent perovskite manganese oxides of La\-xAxMnO^ (v4-divalent alkaline earth Ca, Sr or Ba), whose unusual properties were discovered nearly a half century ago, has recently been revived. The discovery of the colossal magnetoresistance and pressure effects introduced new questions concerning the complex interplay between lattice structure, magnetism and transport in doped perovskite manganites. In this study, we report our experimental investigations of pressure and magnetic field dependencies of La-i/sCai/sMnOs (LCMO) epitaxial films with various thickness on SrTiO$ substrate. An analysis of film thickness dependency of the resistivity of LCMO epitaxial films under pressure and magnetic field has been performed by taking into account substrate contributions. This verifies the correlation of lattice distortion with magnetic and transport properties. Strong dependencies of Mn — O — Mn bond bending and Mn — O bond stretching with pressure as well as Mn spin alignment with magnetic field, and the lattice distortion induced by the substrate are discussed.