Effect of annealing on properties of sputtered and nitrogen-implanted ZnO:Ga thin films
Institute of Electronics and Photonics, Slovak University of
2 Department of Electronics, University of Rousse, Studentska 8, 7017 Ruse, Bulgaria
3 New technologies-Research Center, University of West Bohemia, Plzen Czech Republic
4 VINČA Institute of Nuclear Sciences, Laboratory for Atomic Physics, Belgrade, Serbia
5 International Laser Centre, Bratislava, Slovakia
Received: 14 July 2011
Accepted: 18 April 2012
Published online: 12 July 2012
Thin films of gallium-doped zinc oxide (ZnO:Ga) were deposited on Corning glass substrates by rf diode sputtering and then implanted with 180 keV nitrogen ions in the dose range of 1 × 1015 ÷ 2 × 1016 cm-2. After the ion implantation, the films were annealed under oxygen and nitrogen ambient, at different temperatures and time, and the effect on their microstructure, type and range of conductivity, and optical properties was investigated. Post-implantation annealing at 550 °C resulted in n-type conductivity films with the highest electron concentration of 1.4 × 1020 cm-3. It was found that the annealing parameters had a profound impact on the film’s properties. A p-type conductivity (a hole concentration of 2.8 × 1019 cm-3, mobility of 0.6 cm2/V s) was observed in a sample implanted with 1 × 1016 cm-2 after a rapid thermal annealing (RTA) in N2 at 400 °C. Optical transmittance of all films was >84% in the wavelength range of 390–1100 nm. The SIMS depth profile of the complex 30NO− ions reproduces well a Gaussian profile of ion implantation. XRD patterns reveal a polycrystalline structure of N-implanted ZnO:Ga films with a c-axis preferred orientation of the crystallites. Depending on the annealing conditions, the estimated crystallite size increased 25 ÷ 42 nm and average micro-strains decreased 1.19 × 10-2 ÷ 6.5 × 10-3 respectively.
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