January 1, 2010.
Thin Solid Films of high quality transparent conductive oxide (TCO) metals can be synthesized for energy efficient windows and other materials by filtered cathodic vacuum arc deposition (FCVA). Aluminum-doped zinc oxide, ZnO:Al or AZO, is a well-known n-type transparent TCO with great potential in a number of applications currently dominated by indium tin oxide. In the Plasma Application Group research, the optical and electrical properties of AZO thin films deposited on glass and silicon by pulsed FCVA deposition are systematically studied. The quality of the AZO films strongly depends on growth temperature while only marginal improvements are obtained by post-annealing. The best films, grown at a temperature of about 200 degrees C, have resistivities in the low to mid 1/(10,000 ohm cm) range with a transmittance better than 85% in the visible part of the spectrum. In order to produce the best quality AZO films monitoring experiment must be controlled before and during the experiment. The initial processes were primarily manual in the setup phase and partially automated in the experimental phases. These processes have been automated by analyzing instrumentation FVCA operation and using LabVIEW graphical, dataflow software to control this instrumentation equipment and the FVCA experiments.
Andre Anders, Rueben Mendelsberg
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL)