Time-resolved micro-Raman spectroscopy is used to follow the amorphous to crystalline phase transformation in sol-gel deposited titania films induced thermally or through the action of applied hydrostatic pressure in a diamond anvil cell. Time-dependent phonon intensities intrinsic to the growing phase are related to the volume fraction of crystallite present at any time. The sigmoidally generated curves can be modeled in terms of modified Avrami ingrowth kinetics in which diffusion of the amorphous phase to the nucleation center is restricted by the morphology of the evolving phase. Phonon frequency and linewidth measurements during the course of the transformation probe changes in film stress and particle size which are used to understand the mechanistics of the transformation. Raman measurements also are used to derive a phase stability diagram for titania films.
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This work has been supported by the Materials Sciences Division Basic Energy Sciences, U.S. Department of Energy. Pacific Northwest Laboratory is operated by Battelle Memorial Institute for the U.S. Department of Energy under Contract DE-AC06-76 RLO 1830.
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Exarhos, G.J., Hess, N.J. Raman Studies of Stress-Induced Phase Transformations in Titania Films. MRS Online Proceedings Library 230, 327–332 (1992). https://doi.org/10.1557/PROC-230-327