Matching Items (38)

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The Big World of Nanothermodynamics

Description

Nanothermodynamics extends standard thermodynamics to facilitate finite-size effects on the scale of nanometers. A key ingredient is Hill’s subdivision potential that accommodates the non-extensive energy of independent small systems, similar to how Gibbs’ chemical potential accommodates distinct particles. Nanothermodynamics is

Nanothermodynamics extends standard thermodynamics to facilitate finite-size effects on the scale of nanometers. A key ingredient is Hill’s subdivision potential that accommodates the non-extensive energy of independent small systems, similar to how Gibbs’ chemical potential accommodates distinct particles. Nanothermodynamics is essential for characterizing the thermal equilibrium distribution of independently relaxing regions inside bulk samples, as is found for the primary response of most materials using various experimental techniques. The subdivision potential ensures strict adherence to the laws of thermodynamics: total energy is conserved by including an instantaneous contribution from the entropy of local configurations, and total entropy remains maximized by coupling to a thermal bath. A unique feature of nanothermodynamics is the completely-open nanocanonical ensemble. Another feature is that particles within each region become statistically indistinguishable, which avoids non-extensive entropy, and mimics quantum-mechanical behavior. Applied to mean-field theory, nanothermodynamics gives a heterogeneous distribution of regions that yields stretched-exponential relaxation and super-Arrhenius activation. Applied to Monte Carlo simulations, there is a nonlinear correction to Boltzmann’s factor that improves agreement between the Ising model and measured non-classical critical scaling in magnetic materials. Nanothermodynamics also provides a fundamental mechanism for the 1/f noise found in many materials.

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2015-01-01

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1/f Noise From the Laws of Thermodynamics for Finite-Size Fluctuations

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Computer simulations of the Ising model exhibit white noise if thermal fluctuations are governed by Boltzmann's factor alone; whereas we find that the same model exhibits 1/f noise if Boltzmann's factor is extended to include local alignment entropy to all

Computer simulations of the Ising model exhibit white noise if thermal fluctuations are governed by Boltzmann's factor alone; whereas we find that the same model exhibits 1/f noise if Boltzmann's factor is extended to include local alignment entropy to all orders. We show that this nonlinear correction maintains maximum entropy during equilibrium fluctuations. Indeed, as with the usual way to resolve Gibbs' paradox that avoids entropy reduction during reversible processes, the correction yields the statistics of indistinguishable particles. The correction also ensures conservation of energy if an instantaneous contribution from local entropy is included. Thus, a common mechanism for 1/f noise comes from assuming that finite-size fluctuations strictly obey the laws of thermodynamics, even in small parts of a large system. Empirical evidence for the model comes from its ability to match the measured temperature dependence of the spectral-density exponents in several metals and to show non-Gaussian fluctuations characteristic of nanoscale systems.

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Date Created
2014-07-30

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Hafnium oxide as an alternative barrier to aluminum oxide for thermally stable niobium tunnel junctions

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In this research, our goal was to fabricate Josephson junctions that can be stably processed at 300°C or higher. With the purpose of integrating Josephson junction fabrication with the current semiconductor circuit fabrication process, back-end process temperatures (>350 °C) will

In this research, our goal was to fabricate Josephson junctions that can be stably processed at 300°C or higher. With the purpose of integrating Josephson junction fabrication with the current semiconductor circuit fabrication process, back-end process temperatures (>350 °C) will be a key for producing large scale junction circuits reliably, which requires the junctions to be more thermally stable than current Nb/Al-AlOx/Nb junctions. Based on thermodynamics, Hf was chosen to produce thermally stable Nb/Hf-HfOx/Nb superconductor tunnel Josephson junctions that can be grown or processed at elevated temperatures. Also elevated synthesis temperatures improve the structural and electrical properties of Nb electrode layers that could potentially improve junction device performance. The refractory nature of Hf, HfO2 and Nb allow for the formation of flat, abrupt and thermally-stable interfaces. But the current Al-based barrier will have problems when using with high-temperature grown and high-quality Nb. So our work is aimed at using Nb grown at elevated temperatures to fabricate thermally stable Josephson tunnel junctions. As a junction barrier metal, Hf was studied and compared with the traditional Al-barrier material. We have proved that Hf-HfOx is a good barrier candidate for high-temperature synthesized Josephson junction. Hf deposited at 500 °C on Nb forms flat and chemically abrupt interfaces. Nb/Hf-HfOx/Nb Josephson junctions were synthesized, fabricated and characterized with different oxidizing conditions. The results of materials characterization and junction electrical measurements are reported and analyzed. We have improved the annealing stability of Nb junctions and also used high-quality Nb grown at 500 °C as the bottom electrode successfully. Adding a buffer layer or multiple oxidation steps improves the annealing stability of Josephson junctions. We also have attempted to use the Atomic Layer Deposition (ALD) method for the growth of Hf oxide as the junction barrier and got tunneling results.

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Date Created
2013

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Effect of helium ion irradiation on the tunneling behavior in niobium/aluminum/aluminum oxide/niobium Josephson junctions

Description

The study of high energy particle irradiation effect on Josephson junction tri-layers is relevant to applications in space and radioactive environments. It also allows us to investigate the influence of defects and interfacial intermixing on the junction electrical characteristics. In

The study of high energy particle irradiation effect on Josephson junction tri-layers is relevant to applications in space and radioactive environments. It also allows us to investigate the influence of defects and interfacial intermixing on the junction electrical characteristics. In this work, we studied the influence of 2MeV Helium ion irradiation with doses up to 5.2×1016 ions/cm2 on the tunneling behavior of Nb/Al/AlOx/Nb Josephson junctions. Structural and analytical TEM characterization, combined with SRIM modeling, indicates that over 4nm of intermixing occurred at the interfaces. EDX analysis after irradiation, suggests that the Al and O compositions from the barrier are collectively distributed together over a few nanometers. Surprisingly, the IV characteristics were largely unchanged. The normal resistance, Rn, increased slightly (<20%) after the initial dose of 3.5×1015 ions/cm2 and remained constant after that. This suggests that tunnel barrier electrical properties were not affected much, despite the significant changes in the chemical distribution of the barrier's Al and O shown in SRIM modeling and TEM pictures. The onset of quasi-particle current, sum of energy gaps (2Δ), dropped systematically from 2.8meV to 2.6meV with increasing dosage. Similarly, the temperature onset of the Josephson current dropped from 9.2K to 9.0K. This suggests that the order parameter at the barrier interface has decreased as a result of a reduced mean free path in the Al proximity layer and a reduction in the transition temperature of the Nb electrode near the barrier. The dependence of Josephson current on the magnetic field and temperature does not change significantly with irradiation, suggesting that intermixing into the Nb electrode is significantly less than the penetration depth.

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Date Created
2012

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Characterization of MBE Grown Metal, Semiconductor and Superconductor Films and Interfaces by Concurrent Use of In Situ Reflection High Energy Electron Diffraction (RHEED) and Reflection Electron Energy Loss Spectroscopy (REELS)

Description

This work is an investigation into the information provided by the concurrent use of in situ reflection high energy electron diffraction (RHEED) and reflection electron energy loss spectroscopy (REELS). The two analytical methods were employed during growth of metal, semiconductor

This work is an investigation into the information provided by the concurrent use of in situ reflection high energy electron diffraction (RHEED) and reflection electron energy loss spectroscopy (REELS). The two analytical methods were employed during growth of metal, semiconductor and superconductor thin films by molecular beam epitaxy (MBE). Surface sensitivity of the REELS spectrometer was found to be less than 1 nm for 20 KeV electrons incident at a 2 degree angle to an atomically flat film surface, agreeing with the standard electron escape depth data when adjusted incident angle. Film surface topography was found to strongly influence the REELS spectra and this was correlated with in situ RHEED patterns and ex situ analysis by comparison with atomic force microscopy (AFM). It was observed in all the experimental results that from very smooth films the plasmon peak maxima did not fall at the predicted surface plasmon values but at slightly higher energies, even for nearly atomically flat films. This suggested the REELS plasmon loss spectra are always a combination of surface and bulk plasmon losses. The resulting summation of these two types of losses shifted the peak to below the bulk plasmon value but held its minimum to a higher energy than the pure surface plasmon value. Curve fitting supported this conclusion.

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Date Created
2012

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Precision measurement of the radiative decay mode of the free neutron

Description

The theory of quantum electrodynamics predicts that beta decay of the neutron into a proton, electron, and anti-neutrino should be accompanied by a continuous spectrum of photons. A recent experiment, RDK I, reported the first detection of radiative decay photons

The theory of quantum electrodynamics predicts that beta decay of the neutron into a proton, electron, and anti-neutrino should be accompanied by a continuous spectrum of photons. A recent experiment, RDK I, reported the first detection of radiative decay photons from neutron beta decay with a branching ratio of (3.09 ± 0.32) × 10-3 in the energy range of 15 keV to 340 keV. This was achieved by prompt coincident detection of an electron and photon, in delayed coincidence with a proton. The photons were detected by using a single bar of bismuth germanate scintillating crystal coupled to an avalanche photodiode. This thesis deals with the follow-up experiment, RDK II, to measure the branching ratio at the level of approximately 1% and the energy spectrum at the level of a few percent. The most significant improvement of RDK II is the use of a photon detector with about an order of magnitude greater solid angle coverage than RDK I. In addition, the detectable energy range has been extended down to approximately 250 eV and up to the endpoint energy of 782 keV. This dissertation presents an overview of the apparatus, development of a new data analysis technique for radiative decay, and results for the ratio of electron-proton-photon coincident Repg to electron-proton coincident Rep events.

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Date Created
2012

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Driven-Dissipative Dynamics of the Hubbard Model Attached to a Fermionic Bath

Description

In this project, we created a code that was able to simulate the dynamics of a three site Hubbard model ring connected to an infinite dissipative bath and driven by an electric field. We utilized the master equation approach, which

In this project, we created a code that was able to simulate the dynamics of a three site Hubbard model ring connected to an infinite dissipative bath and driven by an electric field. We utilized the master equation approach, which will one day be able to be implemented efficiently on a quantum computer. For now we used classical computing to model one of the simplest nontrivial driven dissipative systems. This will serve as a verification of the master equation method and a baseline to test against when we are able to implement it on a quantum computer. For this report, we will mainly focus on classifying the DC component of the current around our ring. We notice several expected characteristics of this DC current including an inverse square tail at large values of the electric field and a linear response region at small values of the electric field.

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Date Created
2020-05

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Mechanisms responsible for microwave properties in high performance dielectric materials

Description

Microwave properties of low-loss commercial dielectric materials are optimized by adding transition-metal dopants or alloying agents (i.e. Ni, Co, Mn) to tune the temperature coefficient of resonant frequency (τf) to zero. This occurs as a result of the temperature dependence

Microwave properties of low-loss commercial dielectric materials are optimized by adding transition-metal dopants or alloying agents (i.e. Ni, Co, Mn) to tune the temperature coefficient of resonant frequency (τf) to zero. This occurs as a result of the temperature dependence of dielectric constant offsetting the thermal expansion. At cryogenic temperatures, the microwave loss in these dielectric materials is dominated by electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) loss, which results from the spin-excitations of d-shell electron spins in exchange-coupled clusters. We show that the origin of the observed magnetically-induced shifts in the dielectric resonator frequency originates from the same mechanism, as described by the Kramers-Kronig relations. The temperature coefficient of resonator frequency, τf, is related to three material parameters according to the equation, τf = - (½ τε + ½ τµ + αL), where τε, τµ, and αL are the temperature coefficient of dielectric constant, magnetic permeability, and lattice constant, respectively. Each of these parameters for dielectric materials of interest are measured experimentally. These results, in combination with density functional simulations, developed a much improved understanding of the fundamental mechanisms responsible for τf. The same experimental methods have been used to characterize in-situ the physical nature and concentration of performance-degrading point defects in the dielectrics of superconducting planar microwave resonators.

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Date Created
2016

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Electronic states of high-k oxides in gate stack structures

Description

In this dissertation, in-situ X-ray and ultraviolet photoemission spectroscopy have been employed to study the interface chemistry and electronic structure of potential high-k gate stack materials. In these gate stack materials, HfO2 and La2O3 are selected as high-k dielectrics, VO2

In this dissertation, in-situ X-ray and ultraviolet photoemission spectroscopy have been employed to study the interface chemistry and electronic structure of potential high-k gate stack materials. In these gate stack materials, HfO2 and La2O3 are selected as high-k dielectrics, VO2 and ZnO serve as potential channel layer materials. The gate stack structures have been prepared using a reactive electron beam system and a plasma enhanced atomic layer deposition system. Three interrelated issues represent the central themes of the research: 1) the interface band alignment, 2) candidate high-k materials, and 3) band bending, internal electric fields, and charge transfer. 1) The most highlighted issue is the band alignment of specific high-k structures. Band alignment relationships were deduced by analysis of XPS and UPS spectra for three different structures: a) HfO2/VO2/SiO2/Si, b) HfO2-La2O3/ZnO/SiO2/Si, and c) HfO2/VO2/ HfO2/SiO2/Si. The valence band offset of HfO2/VO2, ZnO/SiO2 and HfO2/SiO2 are determined to be 3.4 ± 0.1, 1.5 ± 0.1, and 0.7 ± 0.1 eV. The valence band offset between HfO2-La2O3 and ZnO was almost negligible. Two band alignment models, the electron affinity model and the charge neutrality level model, are discussed. The results show the charge neutrality model is preferred to describe these structures. 2) High-k candidate materials were studied through comparison of pure Hf oxide, pure La oxide, and alloyed Hf-La oxide films. An issue with the application of pure HfO2 is crystallization which may increase the leakage current in gate stack structures. An issue with the application of pure La2O3 is the presence of carbon contamination in the film. Our study shows that the alloyed Hf-La oxide films exhibit an amorphous structure along with reduced carbon contamination. 3) Band bending and internal electric fields in the gate stack structure were observed by XPS and UPS and indicate the charge transfer during the growth and process. The oxygen plasma may induce excess oxygen species with negative charges, which could be removed by He plasma treatment. The final HfO2 capping layer deposition may reduce the internal potential inside the structures. The band structure was approaching to a flat band condition.

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Date Created
2012

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Synthesis and characterization of erbium compound nanowires as high gain optical materials

Description

Integrated photonics requires high gain optical materials in the telecom wavelength range for optical amplifiers and coherent light sources. Erbium (Er) containing materials are ideal candidates due to the 1.5 μm emission from Er3+ ions. However, the Er density in

Integrated photonics requires high gain optical materials in the telecom wavelength range for optical amplifiers and coherent light sources. Erbium (Er) containing materials are ideal candidates due to the 1.5 μm emission from Er3+ ions. However, the Er density in typical Er-doped materials is less than 1 x 1020 cm-3, thus limiting the maximum optical gain to a few dB/cm, too small to be useful for integrated photonics applications. Er compounds could potentially solve this problem since they contain much higher Er density. So far the existing Er compounds suffer from short lifetime and strong upconversion effects, mainly due to poor quality of crystals produced by various methods of thin film growth and deposition. This dissertation explores a new Er compound: erbium chloride silicate (ECS, Er3(SiO4)2Cl ) in the nanowire form, which facilitates the growth of high quality single crystals. Growth methods for such single crystal ECS nanowires have been established. Various structural and optical characterizations have been carried out. The high crystal quality of ECS material leads to a long lifetime of the first excited state of Er3+ ions up to 1 ms at Er density higher than 1022 cm-3. This Er lifetime-density product was found to be the largest among all Er containing materials. A unique integrating sphere method was developed to measure the absorption cross section of ECS nanowires from 440 to 1580 nm. Pump-probe experiments demonstrated a 644 dB/cm signal enhancement from a single ECS wire. It was estimated that such large signal enhancement can overcome the absorption to result in a net material gain, but not sufficient to compensate waveguide propagation loss. In order to suppress the upconversion process in ECS, Ytterbium (Yb) and Yttrium (Y) ions are introduced as substituent ions of Er in the ECS crystal structure to reduce Er density. While the addition of Yb ions only partially succeeded, erbium yttrium chloride silicate (EYCS) with controllable Er density was synthesized successfully. EYCS with 30 at. % Er was found to be the best. It shows the strongest PL emission at 1.5 μm, and thus can be potentially used as a high gain material.

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Date Created
2013