Ferroelectric and ferroelastic domains have been predicted to enhance metal halide perovskite (MHP) solar cell performance. While the formation of such domains can be modified by temperature, pressure, or strain, established methods lack spatial control at the level of single domains. Here, we induce the formation of ferroelastic domains in CsPbBr3 nanowires at room temperature using an atomic force microscope (AFM) tip and visualize the domains using nanofocused x-ray diffraction with a 60 nm beam. Regions scanned with a low AFM tip force show orthorhombic 004 reflections along the nanowire axis, while regions exposed to higher forces exhibit 220 reflections. The applied stress locally changes the crystal structure, leading to lattice tilts that define ferroelastic domains, which spread spatially and terminate at {112}-type domain walls. The ability to induce individual ferroelastic domains within MHPs using AFM gives new possibilities for device design and fundamental experimental studies.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberL063001
JournalPhysical Review Materials
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Jun 1

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This project has received funding from the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union's Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Programme (Grant No. 801847). This research was also funded by the Olle Engkvist Foundation, NanoLund, and Marie Sklodowska Curie Actions Cofund, Project INCA 600398. We acknowledge MAX IV Laboratory for time on Beamline NanoMAX under Proposal 20190248. Research conducted at MAX IV, a Swedish national user facility, is supported by the Swedish Research Council under Contract No. 2018-07152, the Swedish Governmental Agency for Innovation Systems under Contract No. 2018-04969, and Formas under Contract No. 2019-02496. E.J. acknowledges support from the ERC PoC Grant (No. 838702) and the Israel Science Foundation (No. 2444/19). E.J. holds the Drake Family Professorial Chair of Nanotechnology.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 authors. Published by the American Physical Society.

Copyright 2021 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Physical Sciences


  • CsPbBr3 perovskite nanowires
  • Atomic force microscopy
  • Ferroelasticity
  • Ferroelectrics


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