Direct observation of cation distributions of ideal inverse spinel CoFe2O4 nanofibres and correlated magnetic properties

Xue Zeng, Junwei Zhang, Shimeng Zhu, Xia Deng, Hongbin Ma, Junli Zhang, Qiang Zhang, Peng Li, Desheng Xue, Nigel J Mellors, Xixiang Zhang, Yong Peng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


Low-dimensional spinel ferrites have recently attracted increasing attention because their tunable magnetic properties make them attractive candidates as spin-filtering tunnel barriers in spintronic devices and as magnetic components in artificial multiferroic heterostructures. Although we know that the distribution of cations (Fe3+ and Co2+) in a spinel structure governs its magnetic properties, their distribution in the so-called ideal inverse spinel structure of a ferrite, CoFe2O4, has not yet been imaged with sub-ångstrom resolution. In this work, we fill this gap in evidence by reporting a direct observation of the distribution of cations in an ideal inverse spinel structure of CoFe2O4 nanofibres using aberration-corrected transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The ordering of Co2+ and Fe3+ at the octahedral sites imaged along either [001], [011] or [-112] orientation was identified as 1 : 1, in accordance with the ideal inverse spinel structure. The saturation magnetisation calculated based on the crystal structure as determined from the TEM image is in good agreement with that measured experimentally on the spinel CoFe2O4 nanofibres, further confirming results from TEM.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)7493-7500
Number of pages8
Issue number22
StatePublished - 2017

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2020-10-01
Acknowledgements: This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (51571104 and 11274145), the MOST International Cooperation Funds (2014DFA91340), and the Program for Changjiang Scholars and Innovative Research Team in the University (Grant No. IRT1251).


Dive into the research topics of 'Direct observation of cation distributions of ideal inverse spinel CoFe2O4 nanofibres and correlated magnetic properties'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this