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Surface effects on the magnetization of Zn-doped SnO2 are investigated using first principles method. Magnetic behavior of Zn-doped bulk and highest and lowest energy surfaces—(001) and (110), respectively, are investigated in presence and absence of other intrinsic defects. The Zn-doped (110) and (001) surfaces of SnO2 show appreciable increase in the magnetic moment (MM) compared to Zn-doped bulk SnO2. Formation energies of Zn defects on both the surfaces are found to be lower than those in bulk SnO2. Zn doping favors the formation of oxygen vacancies. The density of states analysis on the Zn-doped (110) surface reveals that the spin polarization of the host band occurs primarily from p-orbitals of bridging oxygen atoms and the Zn atom itself contributes minimally. The present work provides a key understanding on the role played by the surfaces in inducing the magnetism of doped nanoparticles and thin films.

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Copyright (2014) American Institute of Physics. This article may be downloaded for personal use only. Any other use requires prior permission of the author and the American Institute of Physics. The following article appeared in Journal of Applied Physics, Vol. 115, Issue 17, 17C114 and may be found at doi: 10.1063/1.4859995

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