The phonon Raman spectra of Bi2Sr2Ca1 - xYxCu2O8 + d (x = 0-1) have been investigated in a number of well-defined single crystal and polycrystalline samples. From the polarization and Y doping dependence, and from a comparison with previous reports on Bi-based cuprates, we identify the (6A1g + 1B1g) symmetry modes that are Raman allowed within the ideal body-centered tetragonal unit-cell. The vibrational modes that involve atoms in the CuO5 pyramid exhibit drastic changes with increasing Y doping: the bridging-oxygen phonon softens strongly, whereas the CuO2-plane phonons both harden and increase in intensity with increasing Y content. Although the intensity increases can be attributed to the reduced metallic screening in the hole-depleted Y doped samples, the phonon frequency variations are mainly due to the structural changes induced by the decrease in the average Ca/Y ion radius.
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