The phase diagram for the LaBCCO solid solutions La1.5-xBa1.5+x-yCayCu3Oz has been determined in air at 950°C. Solid solution form over the complete composition range 0≤x≤0.5, 0≤y≤0.5 apart from composition at high x and low y, centred on the La-123 composition LaBa2Cu3Oz. The LaBCCO solid solutions are tetragonal at all oxygen contents and are structurally distinct from tetragonal/orthorhombic La-123, which can be prepared as a stoichiometric phase by reaction in Ar. Tc values of the LaBCCO solid solutions increase linearly with x at constant y and with y at constant x for samples prepared under the same conditions. Maximum Tc is ∼78 K for x=y=0.5 for samples that were oxygen annealed at 400°C. The melting behaviour of the LaBCCO solid solutions has been determined. Melting temperatures increase with both decreasing x and y; the La-336 composition has the highest melting temperature (∼1180°C) and melts incongruently to La2CuO4 + liquid.
Bibliographical noteAcknowledgements We thank the ICDD for a scholarship (JMSS), the SERC for research grants (ARW) and J.T.S. Irvine for use of the AC susceptibility equipment.