Pyroelectric and piezoelectric scanning microscopy applied to reveal the bipolar state of 4-iodo-4′-nitrobiphenyl (INBP)

Burgener, Matthias; Labat, Gaël; Bonin, Michel; Morelli, Alessio; Hulliger, Jürg (2013). Pyroelectric and piezoelectric scanning microscopy applied to reveal the bipolar state of 4-iodo-4′-nitrobiphenyl (INBP). CrystEngComm, 15(38), pp. 7652-7656. Royal Society of Chemistry 10.1039/c3ce40902c

[img] Text
c3ce40902c.pdf - Published Version
Restricted to registered users only
Available under License Publisher holds Copyright.

Download (2MB) | Request a copy

Two recent scanning probe techniques were applied to investigate the bipolar twin state of 4-iodo-4′-nitrobiphenyl (INBP) crystals. Solution grown crystals of INBP show typically a morphology which does not express that of a mono-domain polar structure (Fdd2, mm2). From previous X-ray diffraction a twinning volume ratio of [similar]70 : 30 is now explained by two unipolar domains (Flack parameter: 0.075(29)) of opposite orientation of the molecular dipoles, joined by a transition zone showing a width of [similar]140 μm. Scanning pyroelectric microscopy (SPEM) demonstrates a continuous transition of the polarization P from +P into −P across the zone. Application of piezoelectric force microscopy (PFM) confirms unipolar alignment of INBP molecules down to a resolution of [similar]20 nm. A previously proposed real structure for INBP crystals built from lamellae with antiparallel alignment is thus rejected. Anomalous X-ray scattering was used to determine the absolute molecular orientation in the two domains. End faces of the polar axis 2 are thus made up by NO2 groups. Using a previously determined negative pyroelectric coefficient pc leads to a confirmation also by a SPEM analysis. Calculated values for functional group interactions (DA), (AA), (DD) and the stochastic theory of polarity formation allow us to predict that NO2 groups should terminate corresponding faces. Following the present analysis, INBP may represent a first example undergoing dipole reversal upon growth to end up in a bipolar state.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


08 Faculty of Science > Departement of Chemistry and Biochemistry

UniBE Contributor:

Burgener, Matthias; Labat, Gaël; Bonin, Michel and Hulliger, Jürg


500 Science > 570 Life sciences; biology
500 Science > 540 Chemistry




Royal Society of Chemistry




Franziska Bornhauser-Rufer

Date Deposited:

04 Apr 2014 23:07

Last Modified:

24 Aug 2015 14:24

Publisher DOI:





Actions (login required)

Edit item Edit item
Provide Feedback