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Combinaison de la diffusion diffuse thermique de la diffusion inélastique des rayons X et des calculs ab inito pour l'étude de la dynamique de réseau

Abstract : The classical methods in the study of lattice dynamics, such as inelastic neutron and x-ray scattering, are and will remain flux-limited, consequently the measurements are time consuming. To maximise the yield of these techniques, measurement strategies need to be established prior to the experiment. These strategies can be elaborated and optimised by lattice dynamics calculations and thermal diffuse scattering. Measuring thermal diffuse scattering is a simple experiment where extended regions of reciprocal space can be rapidly explored in detail and characteristic features of the lattice dynamics identified. Slower spectroscopy measurements can then be applied on the selected regions of interest to gain access to the energy and intensity of individual vibrations. Moreover, in some cases the input of thermal diffuse scattering may become so constraining for the (quasi)harmonic lattice dynamic calculation, that inelastic scattering experiment will not be a necessary ingredient for the recovery of a self-consistent picture of the dynamics. In the frame of this work, the combination of thermal diffuse scattering, inelastic x-ray scattering and lattice dynamics calculations from first principles ab initio is applied to study the lattice dynamics of single crystals. Both diffuse scattering intensities and inelastic spectra determined by experiment are compared to the ones calculated ab initio. The combination of these three techniques gives access to the full lattice dynamics in the harmonic description and permits valuable new insights into the vibrational properties. The reader will be introduced to the key formalism of lattice dynamics, inelastic and thermal diffuse scattering. Methods for the calculation of vibrational properties from first principles are discussed, followed by a guideline for well converged calculations. The experimental techniques used in this work are presented and new possibilities for combined studies examined. The methodology is illustrated for several benchmark systems. Two silica polymorphs - coesite and alpha-cristobalite – were chosen as examples for covalent systems and investigated in detail. The experimentally validated calculation was used for the analysis of eigenvectors and eigenvalues of different modes, and their contribution to the total and partial density of vibrational states. Comparison with the most abundant silica polymorph - alpha-quartz - and germanium oxide in alpha-quartz structure reveals distinct similarities and differences in the low-energy vibrational properties. Metallic tin polymorphs were chosen to study the influence of the electron subsystem on inter-ionic interactions and the lattice dynamics. Tin exhibits both interesting structural properties and a complex Fermi surface. An unusual asymmetry of thermal diffuse scattering is observed which can be explained within the frame of harmonic lattice dynamics. Finally, the established method is applied to ice which exhibits not only characteristic thermal diffuse scattering but also static contributions from the hydrogen disorder. The methodology proposed in the present work provides a powerful tool in the study of lattice dynamics and will be applicable to a large variety of systems. The studies can be extended to extreme conditions involving very high pressures and a large temperature range. It may be also used to study localised properties of atomic vibrations in systems with broken symmetries, e.g. disorder or surface effects.
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Björn Wehinger. Combinaison de la diffusion diffuse thermique de la diffusion inélastique des rayons X et des calculs ab inito pour l'étude de la dynamique de réseau. Autre [cond-mat.other]. Université de Grenoble, 2013. Français. ⟨NNT : 2013GRENY029⟩. ⟨tel-00961602⟩

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