Switching Phenomena and Small-Signal Response
This chapter is devoted to phenomena associated with a change in time of the domain state of a ferroic. Locally, such change corresponds to transitions between domain states at least in a small fraction of the sample volume. When the major part of a sample changes its domain state one speaks about a switching process or simply switching. The most characteristic macroscopic phenomenon representing this process is the hysteresis loop, often used as a logo for ferromagnetics, ferroelectrics, or ferroelastics. Such hysteretic dependence of the order parameter on the conjugate force is an integral effect; it is the macroscopic portrayal of numerous microscopic processes taking place in a ferroic sample. Most of this chapter will be dealing with switching and switching-related phenomena.