Journal of Materials Science

, Volume 52, Issue 16, pp 9314–9323 | Cite as

Microstructural transitions and dielectric properties of boron-doped amorphous alumina thin film

  • Zhen Su
  • Manwen Yao
  • Fei Li
  • Yong Peng
  • Qian Feng
  • Xi Yao


Dielectric Al2−x B x OY thin films were deposited onto Pt (100)/Ti/SiO2/Si substrates via sol–gel and spin-coating technology. The microstructural transition occurred at ~500 °C due to boron loading was confirmed by DSC and XRD. FTIR, 27Al MAS NMR and XPS measurements were employed to investigate the microstructural transition caused by different boron concentrations. The results revealed that Al–O–B bonds and [AlO4] tetrahedrons were produced resulting in the reinforcement of structure with relatively low boron concentrations. With the increase of boron concentration, [BO3] chains and new surfaces crossing over the internal structure gradually produced and disrupted the structural stability. Meanwhile, hydroxyl groups were accumulated in the internal structure owing to the hydrophilic property of boron. According to the reinforced structure with low boron concentrations, the current density decreased and the breakdown strength was enhanced. Typically, the current density was decreased two orders of magnitude at 100 MV m−1 and the breakdown strength of the 0.5 mol% B-doped alumina thin film was increased by 59% (from 293 to 465 MV m−1) in comparison with that of the undoped alumina thin film, whereas the dielectric properties gradually become poor due to the weak structure with the increase of boron concentration. Moreover, the dielectric constant increased owing to hydroxyl groups when the boron doping increased. This work may provide a general strategy for enhancing dielectric properties of the alumina thin film.


Boron Dielectric Property Boron Concentration Breakdown Strength Boron Addition 
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This work is supported by the Ministry of Science and Technology of China through 973-project (Grant Number 2015CB654601) and National Science Foundation of China (Grant Number 51272177).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Zhen Su
    • 1
  • Manwen Yao
    • 1
  • Fei Li
    • 1
  • Yong Peng
    • 1
  • Qian Feng
    • 1
  • Xi Yao
    • 1
  1. 1.Functional Materials Research Laboratory, School of Materials Science and EngineeringTongji UniversityShanghaiChina

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