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Morphology-Tunable Synthesis of Intrinsic Room-Temperature Ferromagnetic γ-Fe2O3 Nanoflakes

Jia, Z.; Wang, W.; Li, Z.; Sun, R.; Zhou, S.; Leonard Deepak, F.; Su, C.; Li, Y.; Wang, Z.

Intrinsic two-dimensional (2D) magnetic materials with room-temperature ferromagnetism and air stability are highly desirable for spintronic applications. However, the experimental observations of such 2D or ultrathin ferromagnetic materials are rarely reported owing to the scarcity of these materials in nature and for the intricacy in their synthesis. Here, we report a successful controllable growth of ultrathin γ-Fe2O3 nanoflakes with a variety of morphologies tunable by the growth temperature alone using a facile chemical vapor deposition method and demonstrate that all ultrathin nanoflakes still show intrinsic room-temperature ferromagnetism and a semiconducting nature. The γ-Fe2O3 nanoflakes epitaxially grown on α-Al2O3 substrates take a triangular shape at low temperature and develop gradually in lateral size, forming eventually a large-scale γ-Fe2O3 thin film as the growth time increases due to a thermodynamic control process. The morphology of the nanoflakes could be tuned from triangular to stellated, petaloid, and dendritic crystalloids in sequence with the rise of precursor temperature, revealing a growth process from thermodynamically to kinetically dominated control. Moreover, the petaloid and dendritic nanoflakes exhibit enhanced coercivity compared with the triangular and stellated nanoflakes, and all the nanoflakes with diverse shapes possess differing electrical conductivity. The findings of such ultrathin, air-stable, and room-temperature ferromagnetic γ-Fe2O3 nanoflakes with tunable shape and multifunctionality may offer guidance in synthesizing other non-layered magnetic materials for next-generation electronic and spintronic devices.

Keywords: γ-Fe2O3 nanoflakes; morphology tunable synthesis; room-temperature ferromagnetism; coercivity; resistivity

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  • Secondary publication expected from 17.05.2022

Permalink: https://www.hzdr.de/publications/Publ-32739
Publ.-Id: 32739