Far-field experiments
This protocol is extracted from research article:
Internal strain tunes electronic correlations on the nanoscale
Sci Adv, Dec 14, 2018; DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aau9123

After the near-field experiments have been finished, the samples were characterized by Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy in far-field geometry. To that end, we used a coldfinger microcryostat in combination with an infrared microscope. The spatial resolution of ≈30 μm by 30 μm enabled us to identify and scrutinize the very same spot on the sample as investigated in near-field. Temperature was ramped with 1 K/min to a value slightly above the CO transition at TCO = 136 K, and a spectrum was recorded for sample and reference mirror separately to determine the absolute reflectivity. Then, optical spectra in the mid-infrared (500 to 8000 cm−1) were monitored on a selected area in intervals of 1 min during very slow cooling (0.01 K/min). By integrating the optical reflectivity in the range of 700 to 1000 cm−1 as indicated in Fig. 1D, we determined the spectral weight SW(T) with a temperature resolution of 0.01 K, the result of which is plotted in Fig. 3 (C and D). This quantity measures the sum of insulating and metallic regions and thus serves as a kind of order parameter to trace the transition in a quantitative manner. We performed similar temperature sweeps through the transition at different spots of the surface, yielding distinct results indicative of regions with different strain, as discussed in the Supplementary Materials (4854).

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