Influence of film thickness and annealing atmosphere on the structural, optical and luminescence properties of nanocrystalline TiO2 thin films prepared by RF magnetron sputtering
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TiO2 thin films were deposited onto quartz substrates by RF magnetron sputtering. Inorder to investigate the effect of film thickness on the structural and optical properties, films were deposited for different time durations, and post-annealed at 873 K. The influence of annealing atmosphere (air/oxygen) on the film properties was also investigated. The films were characterized using X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), UV–vis spectroscopy and photoluminescence (PL) spectroscopy. Films deposited at different time durations are amorphous-like in nature. From XRD patterns it can be inferred that deposition for longer duration is essential for achieving crystallisation in TiO2 thin films prepared by RF magnetron sputtering. The films exhibited good adherence to the substrate and are crack free as revealed by SEM images. Film thickness was found to increase with increase in sputtering time. The optical band gap of the films was found to decrease with increase in film thickness, which is consistant with XRD observations. Film thickness did not show any significant variation when annealed in both air and oxygen. Defect related PL emission in the visible region (blue) was observed in all the investigated films, which suggests the application of these films in optoelectronic display devices.
KeywordsTiO2 Oxygen Vacancy TiO2 Film Quartz Substrate TiO2 Thin Film
One of the authors (P.V.T) wishes to thank the University Grants Commission, New Delhi for the financial assistance (F.No. 39-503/2010(SR)).
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