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Theses Doctoral

Spectroscopy of the Temperature and Current Driven Metal-Insulator Transition in Ca₂RuO₄

Cheng, Minghao

This thesis presents the study for the temperature-driven and current-driven metal-insulator phase transition (MIT) in Ca₂RuO₄ via home-built variable temperature Scanning Tunneling Microscope. Atomically resolved topography images along with temperature dependence of resistivity are taken verifying the quality of the single crystals used in this experiment. Tunneling spectra are measured under various temperatures across the Tmi = 357K, which clearly shows spectra evolution with temperature and the difference between the room- temperature insulator phase and the high-temprature metal phase. Compared with DMFT calculation, the STS indicates lattice structure plays a vital role in the phase transition. Same measurement is conducted on the crystals under a DC current, thanks to a custom designed sample holder. The evolution of the tunneling spectra with source current demon- strates similarity with the one of temperature-driven MIT. The comparison between the spectra taken at high-temperature metalic state and the high-current metalic state high- lights the similarity of these 2 phases, with both showing a DOS transfer from 1eV to lower energy, when compared with the ground state. Combined with a variety of other studies via transport, scattering technique and infrared thermal imaging, it is found that the local temperature dominates both temperature-driven and current-driven MIT. It is very likely that the current-driven is caused by the inevitable Joule heating generated by the current, indicating the high-current metallic phase might be the same with high-current metallic phase. Finally, surface roughness and autocorrelation length analysis suggests an inhomo- geneous surface topography stemmed from the coexistence of the insulating S* phase and conducting L* phase under current.

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More About This Work

Academic Units
Physics
Thesis Advisors
Uemura, Yasutomo
Degree
Ph.D., Columbia University
Published Here
September 8, 2020