Nb K-edge x-ray absorption spectroscopy is utilized to investigate the changes in the local structure of the A-site deficient double perovskite La1/3NbO3 which undergoes a pressure induced irreversible amorphization. EXAFS results show that with increasing pressure up to 7.5 GPa, the average Nb-O bond distance decreases in agreement with the expected compression and tilting of the NbO6 octahedra. On the contrary, above 7.5 GPa, the average Nb-O bond distance show a tendency to increase. Significant changes in the Nb K-edge XANES spectrum with evident low energy shift of the pre-peak and the absorption edge is found to happen in La1/3NbO3 above 6.3 GPa. These changes evidence a gradual reduction of the Nb cations from Nb5+ towards Nb4+ above 6.3 GPa. Such a valence change accompanied by the elongation of the average Nb-O bond distances in the octahedra, introduces repulsion forces between non-bonding adjacent oxygen anions in the unoccupied A-sites. Above a critical pressure, the Nb reduction mechanism can no longer be sustained by the changing local structure and amorphization occurs, apparently due to the build-up of local strain. EXAFS and XANES results indicate two distinct pressure regimes having different local and electronic response in the La1/3NbO3 system before the occurence of the pressure induced amorphization at ∼14.5 GPa.
|Journal||Journal of Physics Condensed Matter|
|State||Published - 8 Jan 2016|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Materials Science (all)
- Condensed Matter Physics