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Multilayer composite AZO/AGZO thin films for transparent conductive electrodes

Wilkins, I., Henry, D. and Jiang, Z-T (2016) Multilayer composite AZO/AGZO thin films for transparent conductive electrodes. In: Australian Institute of Physics (AIP) WA 2016 Postgraduate Conference, 13 October 2016, University of Western Australia, Perth


Transparent electronics are an essential ingredient in many new technologies which are emerging in the 21st century - high efficiency solar cells[ll, interactive and transparent displays, energy efficient windows, and photonics for communications and computing[2J. The development of functionalised transparent conductive oxide materials (TCOs), in terms of abundant, cheap and environmentally friendly, is critical for materials science in such applications. Specifically, an impmiant research goal is to find substitutes for the dominant TCO material indium tin oxide (ITO), made from indium which is scarce, expensive and toxic. Zinc oxides doped with small amounts of aluminium (AZO), are promising candidates for such a substitute but generally don't perform as well as IT0[2l. Gallium co-doping with aluminium improves AZO performance significantly, but raises similar concerns to ITO, in terms of the scarcity and high cost of gallium.

This project aims to enhance the conductivity of AZO thin films-by adding a thin 'seed' layer co-doped with AI and minimum Ga concentration (AGZO). The project employed solution based sol-gel technique for synthesising AZO/GZO nanoparticles and then deposited on glass substrates through a spin coating process, followed by thermal annealing treatment. The optical properties, crystal structure and surface morphology of the films were characterised using UV-vis spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction and scanning electron microscopy. Composite multilayer films, with thickness around 400nm, exhibit transmittance above 90% across the visible range and resistivity approximately 10 O•cm.

Preliminary results indicate significant improvement in AZO films with the co-doped AGZO layer, compared with AZO films alone. Compared to uniformly doped AGZO films, the composite multilayer films exhibited similar performance, but with only 20% of the gallium consumed.

Publication Type: Conference Paper
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Engineering and Information Technology
Conference Website:
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