Optical properties and structure of HfO<inf>2</inf> thin films grown by high pressure reactive sputtering

  • F. L. Martínez /
  • M. Toledano-Luque /
  • J. J. Gandía /
  • J. Cárabe /
  • W. Bohne /
  • J. Röhrich /
  • E. Strub /
  • I. Mártil
Journal ar
Journal of Physics D: Applied Physics
  • Volumen: 40
  • Número: 17
  • Fecha: 07 September 2007
  • Páginas: 5256-5265
  • ISSN: 00223727 13616463
  • Source Type: Journal
  • DOI: 10.1088/0022-3727/40/17/037
  • Document Type: Article
Thin films of hafnium oxide (HfO2) have been grown by high pressure reactive sputtering on transparent quartz substrates (UV-grade silica) and silicon wafers. Deposition conditions were adjusted to obtain polycrystalline as well as amorphous films. Optical properties of the films deposited on the silica substrates were investigated by transmittance and reflectance spectroscopy in the ultraviolet, visible and near infrared range. A numerical analysis method that takes into account the different surface roughness of the polycrystalline and amorphous films was applied to calculate the optical constants (refractive index and absorption coefficient). Amorphous films were found to have a higher refractive index and a lower transparency than polycrystalline films. This is attributed to a higher density of the amorphous samples, which was confirmed by atomic density measurements performed by heavy-ion elastic recoil detection analysis. The absorption coefficient gave an excellent fit to the Tauc law (indirect gap), which allowed a band gap value of 5.54 eV to be obtained. The structure of the films (amorphous or polycrystalline) was found to have no significant influence on the nature of the band gap. The Tauc plots also give information about the structure of the films, because the slope of the plot (the Tauc parameter) is related to the degree of order in the bond network. The amorphous samples had a larger value of the Tauc parameter, i.e. more order than the polycrystalline samples. This is indicative of a uniform bond network with percolation of the bond chains, in contrast to the randomly oriented polycrystalline grains separated by grain boundaries. © 2007 IOP Publishing Ltd.

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