By keeping ferroelectric ‘bubbles’ intact, researchers pave way for new devices

Observation of freestanding ferroelectric bubble domains by high-resolution piezoresponse force microscopy: The two blue-white spots (4 nm radius) at the right side of the image indicate bubbles. Credit: Argonne National Laboratory.)

When a magician suddenly pulls a tablecloth off a table laden with plates and glasses, there is a moment of suspense as the audience wonders if the stage will soon be littered with broken glass. Until now, an analogous dilemma had faced scientists working with special electrical bubbles to create the next generation of flexible microelectronic and energy storage devices.

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