Influence of metal (M = Cd, In, and Sn) dopants on the properties of spin-coated WO3 thin films and fabrication of temperature-dependent heterojunction diodes

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Metal-doped tungsten trioxide (M = Cd, In, and Sn:WO3) thin films were prepared using sol–gel spin-coating and their structural, optical, electrical properties were studied for the fabrication of p–n heterojunction diode. X-ray diffraction (XRD) analysis revealed that Cd, In, and Sn dopants have a strong influence on the lattice parameters and defect factor without making any changes in the structure. Scanning electron microscope (SEM) images reflect that the dopants have a strong impact on the surface morphologies of the WO3 thin film. The UV–visible analysis shows a high optical transmittance (∼82%) and variation in the bandgap was also obtained. The dc electrical conductivity (σdc) indicates that the band conduction mechanism is predominant in the pure and doped M:WO3 thin films. Current density–voltage (JV) characteristics of WO3/p-Si, Cd:WO3/p-Si, In:WO3/p-Si, and Sn:WO3/p-Si diodes were measured under dark and illumination conditions. In which, the Sn:WO3/p-Si diode exhibits better performance with good ideality factor (n = 2.6) and barrier height (ФB = 0.90) values for under illumination. Most importantly, the JVT characteristics of all the fabricated diodes were analyzed with different temperatures (303–423 K).


  • High quality WO3 thin films were prepared by sol–gel spin coating technique.

  • Effect of metal dopants (Cd, In and Sn) on structural and optical properties of WO3 thin films were investigated.

  • Microplate-like structure was grown on glass substrates.

  • High-sensitive heterojunction diodes were fabricated.

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The authors gratefully acknowledge the financial support from the DST, Government of India, for the major research project (EMR/2016/007874).

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Correspondence to J. Chandrasekaran.

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Raja, M., Chandrasekaran, J., Balaji, M. et al. Influence of metal (M = Cd, In, and Sn) dopants on the properties of spin-coated WO3 thin films and fabrication of temperature-dependent heterojunction diodes. J Sol-Gel Sci Technol (2020) doi:10.1007/s10971-019-05207-9

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  • Sol–gel spin coating
  • Ideality factor
  • WO3 thin films
  • Heterojunction diodes