Strong anisotropy of ferroelectricity in lead-free bismuth silicate†
Bismuth silicate (Bi2SiO5) was recently suggested as a potential silicate based lead-free ferroelectric material. Here, we show the existence of ferroelectricity and explore the strong anisotropy of local ferroelectricity using piezoresponse force microscopy (PFM). Domain structures are reconstructed using angle-resolved PFM. Furthermore, piezoresponse hysteresis loops and piezoelectric coefficients are spatially investigated at the nanoscale. The obtained results confirm the existence of ferroelectricity with strong c-axis polarization. These results could provide basic information on the anisotropic ferroelectricity in Bi2SiO5 and furthermore suggest its considerable potential for lead-free ferroelectric applications with silicon technologies.