Effect of thermal annealing on the structural, electrical and optical properties of Al-Ni co-doped ZnO thin films prepared using a sol-gel method

Zhang, X. L., Hui, K. S., Bin, Feng, Hui, K. N., Li, Lei, Cho, Y. R., Mane, Rajaram S. and Zhou, Wei (2015) Effect of thermal annealing on the structural, electrical and optical properties of Al-Ni co-doped ZnO thin films prepared using a sol-gel method. Surface and Coatings Technology, 261. pp. 149-155. ISSN 0257-8972

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Abstract

Al-Ni co-doped ZnO (NiAl:ZnO) thin films were deposited on glass substrates using a sol-gel method. Based on a previous study, Zn1-xAlxO (AZO; Al/Zn=1.5mol%) thin films optimized with a Ni content of 0.5mol% were annealed at different temperatures from 450 to 600°C in N2/H2 (95/5) forming gas for 1h. The effects of the annealing temperature on the structural, electrical and optical properties were determined. X-ray diffraction showed that NiAl:ZnO thin film annealed at 500°C exhibited the best crystallization quality. XPS revealed the presence of metallic Ni and Ni2O3 states, as well as Ni and Al atoms were successfully doped in NiAl:ZnO films, which did not result in a change in ZnO crystal structure and orientation. Scanning electron microscopy showed that the films were smooth and compact, and the grain size increased with increasing annealing temperature from ~23.8nm to ~34.6nm. According to the Hall Effect measurements, when the temperature reached 500°C, the resistivity of the thin film showed the lowest value of 1.05×10-3 (Ωcm), which is the lowest resistivity reported for NiAl:ZnO films. The UV-Vis transmission spectra showed a high transmittance of more than 80% in the visible light range, and the band gap of the films was increased from 3.30 to 3.55eV. This study showed that the annealing temperature in the forming gas is a vital factor affecting the quality of thin films. In addition, 500°C was found to be the most appropriate annealing temperature for NiAl:ZnO films. This study provides a simple and efficient method for preparing high quality, high transparency and low resistivity NiAl:ZnO films for optoelectronic applications.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: al-ni co-doped zno,annealing temperature,forming gas,sol-gel method
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Science > School of Mathematics
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Pure Connector
Date Deposited: 04 Oct 2016 12:01
Last Modified: 16 Sep 2019 08:34
URI: https://ueaeprints.uea.ac.uk/id/eprint/60671
DOI: 10.1016/j.surfcoat.2014.11.043

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