Living Reference Work Entry

Handbook of Sol-Gel Science and Technology

pp 1-44

Date: Latest Version

Alumina Thin Films

  • Marianne NofzAffiliated withDivision 5.6 “Glas”, Bundesanstalt für Materialforschung und – prüfung Email author 


This chapter gives an overview over preparation, properties, and applications of alumina thin films. The preparation of polymeric and colloidal alumina sols and their deposition on diverse substrate materials with different geometries are described first. Consideration of properties (surface tension, particle size, viscosity, aging of the sols, and their optimization by using certain additives) is included, too. A description of posttreatments of the coatings, which initiate phase transformations and also determine their microstructure, completes the part on coating preparation. Data on adhesion, thickness, surface roughness, and mechanical, textural as well as optical properties of alumina thin films are provided in a further paragraph. In a third main part, experience concerning possible applications, such as (i) membranes for catalysis, separation, and filtration, (ii) barrier layers against electrochemical and high-temperature corrosion or interdiffusion of ions between different phases, (iii) mechanical protection, (iv) sensor construction, (v) improvement of optical properties, as well as (vi) achieving water repellency, is summarized.