Abstract: We present data for epitaxial thin films of the prototypical entropy-stabilized oxide (ESO), Mg0.2Ni0.2Co0.2Cu0.2Zn0.2O, that reveals a systematic trend in lattice parameter and properties as a function of substrate temperature during film growth with negligible changes in microstructure. A larger net Co valence in films grown at substrate temperatures below 350 °C results in a smaller lattice parameter, a smaller optical band gap, and stronger magnetic exchange bias. Observation of this phenomena suggests a complex interplay between thermodynamics and kinetics during ESO synthesis; specifically thermal history, oxygen chemical potential, and entropy. In addition to the compositional degrees of freedom available to ESO systems, subtle nuances in atomic structure at constant metallic element proportions can strongly influence properties, simultaneously complicating physical characterization and providing opportunities for property tuning and development.
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