Observation of epitaxially ordered twinned zinc aluminate “nanoblades” on c-sapphire
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We report the observation of a novel nanostructured growth mode of the ceramic spinel zinc aluminate grown on c-sapphire in the form of epitaxially ordered twinned crystallites with pronounced vertically aligned “nanoblades” on top of these crystallites. The nanostructures are formed on bare c-sapphire substrates using a vapour phase transport method. Electron microscopy images reveal the nanostructure morphology and dimensions and allow direct and indirect observation of the twin boundary location in a number of samples. The nanoblade structure with sharply rising sidewalls gives rise to a distinctive bright contrast in secondary electron images in scanning electron microscopy measurements.
KeywordsTwin Boundary ZnAl2O4 Zinc Aluminate Epitaxial Relationship High Temperature Electronic
We acknowledge financial support from SFI (PI grant # 02/IN1/I95 and equipment funding under Grant No. 03/IN3/1361/EC07), the Irish HEA under the NDP and internal funding from the NCPST, DCU.
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