Extreme mobility enhancement of two-dimensional electron gases at oxide interfaces via charge transfer induced modulation doping

Yunzhong Chen, Felix Trier, T. Wijnands, R. J. Green, N. Gauquelin, R. Egoavil, Dennis Valbjørn Christensen, G. Koster, M. Huijben, N. Bovet, S. Macke, F. He, R. Sutarto, Niels Hessel Andersen, J. A. Sulpizio, M. Honig, G. E. D. K. Prawiroatmodjo, T. S. Jespersen, Søren Linderoth, S. IlaniJo Verbeeck, G. Van Tendeloo, Guus Rijnders, G. A. Sawatzky, Nini Pryds

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The discovery of two-dimensional electron gases (2DEGs) at the interface between two insulating complex oxides, such as LaAlO3 (LAO) or gamma-Al2O3 (GAO) epitaxially grown on SrTiO3 (STO), provides an opportunity for developing all-oxide electronic devices. These 2DEGs at complex oxide interfaces involve many-body interactions and give rise to a rich set of phenomena, for example, superconductivity, magnetism, tunable metal-insulator transitions, and phase separation. However, large enhancement of the interfacial electron mobility remains a major and long-standing challenge for fundamental as well as applied research of complex oxides. Here, we inserted a single unit cell insulating layer of polar La1-xSrxMnO3 (x=0, 1/8, and 1/3) at the interface between disordered LaAlO3 and crystalline SrTiO3 created at room temperature. We find that the electron mobility of the interfacial 2DEG is enhanced by more than two orders of magnitude. Our in-situ and resonant x-ray spectroscopic in addition to transmission electron microscopy results indicate that the manganite layer undergoes unambiguous electronic reconstruction and leads to modulation doping of such atomically engineered complex oxide heterointerfaces. At low temperatures, the modulation-doped 2DEG exhibits clear Shubnikov-de Haas oscillations and the initial manifestation of the quantum Hall effect, demonstrating an unprecedented high-mobility and low electron density oxide 2DEG system. These findings open new avenues for oxide electronics.
Original languageEnglish
JournalNature Materials
Issue number8
Pages (from-to)801-806
Publication statusPublished - 2015

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