||Since the discovery of transparent conducting oxide (TCO) thin films，TCO has been widely used in optoelectronic devices. To increase the potential application of the TCO, this study aims at growing amorphous TCO thin films which possess visible transparency and high electric conductivity. Up to date, only IGZO exhibits these properties. However, the nature resource of indium, the main material in IGZO, is rare and expensive. In this study, searching for new materials that do not contain In, while manifest high transparent and conductivity is our major challenge. |
ZnO has an energy band gap of 3.4eV, for which visible photon does not have enough energy to excite the electron in ZnO from the valence band to conduction band. Therefore, it reveals itself as transparent. ZnO materials are relative stable in high temperature and chemical environments and thus a good candidate for been developed into amorphous TCO.
The reason for the high conductivity in amorphous IGZO thin films is because the S orbital of In is spherical symmetry and has large radius in which can overlap with the next In ions to form a continuous band for conduction. In this study, a similar strategy is employed by use of the large S orbital of the doping tin (Sn) in ZnO. A ceramic ZnO target for the pulse laser deposition system is partially wrapped with tin foil. The optimum growth condition are searching by tuning oxygen partial pressure, laser energy, the distance between the target and substrate, and substrate temperature.