Crystal growth of the cuprate superconductor La1.6-xNd0.4SrxCuO4 by the traveling solvent floating zone method
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In this thesis, my efforts of the single crystal growth of a cuprate series La₁.₆₋[subscript x]Nd₀.₄Sr[subscript x]CuO₄ by the travelling solvent floating zone method will be described. The availability of high quality single crystals is essential to facilitate experimental studies of high temperature superconductivity in the cuprates. Repeated attempts gradually lead to crystals with the improved qualities. A single pattern well indexed via the X-ray powder diffraction suggests that the crystals were grown with the correct chemistry and single phase. Laue back reflection, on the other hand, indicates that domains with different orientations in the same crystals still exist, and crystal growth processes can be further optimized. Discussions, and possible routes of further optimization of the growth process are suggested at the end of the thesis based on the principles of the travelling solvent growth. A continuous supply of large and better quality crystals would help offer more insight into this challenging strongly correlated system.