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Journal of Nanomaterials
Volume 2015, Article ID 169874, 8 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2015/169874
Review Article

Characterization of Multiferroic Domain Structures in Multiferroic Oxides

National Laboratory of Solid State Microstructures, School of Physics, Nanjing University, Nanjing 210093, China

Received 25 April 2014; Accepted 27 September 2014

Academic Editor: Debasis Dhak

Copyright © 2015 Lizhi Liang et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Multiferroic oxides have been received much attention due to that these materials exhibit multiple ferroic order parameters (e.g., electric polarization in ferroelectrics, magnetization in ferromagnetics, or spontaneous strain in ferroelastics) simultaneously in the same phase in a certain temperature range, which offer an exciting way of coupling between the ferroic order parameters. Thus, this provides a possibility for constructing new type of multifunctional devices. The multiferroic domain structures in these materials are considered to be an important factor to improve the efficiency and performance of future multiferroic devices. Therefore, the domain structures in multiferroic oxides are widely investigated. Recent developments in domain characterization techniques, particularly the aberration-corrected transmission electron microscopy (TEM), have enabled us to determine the domain structures at subangstrom scale, and the recent development of in situ TEM techniques allows ones to study the dynamic behaviors of multiferroic domains under applied fields or stress while the atomic structure is imaged directly. This paper provides a review of recent advances on the characterization of multiferroic domain structures in multiferroic oxides, which have been achieved by the notable advancement of aberration-corrected TEM.