A ferroelectric-like structural transition in a metal

Youguo Shi, Yanfeng Guo, Xia Wang, Andrew J. Princep, Dmitry Khalyavin, Pascal Manuel, Yuichi Michiue, Akira Sato, Kenji Tsuda, Shan Yu, Masao Arai, Yuichi Shirako, Masaki Akaogi, Nanlin Wang, Kazunari Yamaura, Andrew T. Boothroyd

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

254 Citations (Scopus)


Metals cannot exhibit ferroelectricity because static internal electric fields are screened by conduction electrons, but in 1965, Anderson and Blount predicted the possibility of a ferroelectric metal, in which a ferroelectric-like structural transition occurs in the metallic state. Up to now, no clear example of such a material has been identified. Here we report on a centrosymmetric () to non-centrosymmetric (R3c) transition in metallic LiOsO 3 that is structurally equivalent to the ferroelectric transition of LiNbO 3 (ref.). The transition involves a continuous shift in the mean position of Li + ions on cooling below 140 K. Its discovery realizes the scenario described in ref., and establishes a new class of materials whose properties may differ from those of normal metals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1024-1027
Number of pages4
JournalNature Materials
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 2013 Nov

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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