Influence of the substrate type on the microstructural, optical and electrical properties of sol–gel ITO films
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Indium tin oxide (ITO) is recognized as the best transparent and conductive material [transparent conducting oxide (TCO)] until now and its properties are dependent on the preparation method. In the present work ITO films with In:Sn atomic ratio 9:1 were prepared by a sol–gel route on different substrates (microscope glass slides, microscope glass covered with one layer of SiO2 and Si wafers) for TCO applications. The multilayer ITO films were obtained by successive deposition by the dip-coating method and the films were characterized from the structural, morphological, optical, and electrical points of view using X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, atomic force microscopy, spectroscopic ellipsometry and by Hall effect measurements, respectively. The results showed that the thickness, optical constants and carrier numbers depend strongly on the type of substrate, number of deposited layers and sol concentration. The optical properties of ITO films are closely related to their electrical properties. The enhancement of the conductivity was possible with the increase of crystallite size (which occurred after thermal treatment) and with the reduction of surface roughness.
KeywordsITO film Sol–gel process Microstructure, optical and electrical properties
This work was supported by the Romanian PN-II-ID-PCE-2011-3-0446 Project and by EU (ERDF) and Romanian Government that allowed for acquisition of the research infrastructure under POS-CCE O 2.2.1 Project INFRANANOCHEM—Nr. 19/01.03.2009.
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