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Comparison of DC and RF sputtered aluminium-doped zinc oxide for photovoltaic applications

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conference contribution
posted on 28.01.2016 by Patrick Isherwood, Michael Gona, Jake Bowers, Nuno N.P. Neves, Paul Newbatt, Michael Walls
AZO was sputter deposited using both RF and DC power supplies from a pre-formed ceramic AZO target with a 2 wt % aluminium oxide dopant concentration. The target was formed by hot pressing pre-doped nanoparticles produced using an emulsion detonation synthesis technique. AZO films were found to display good optical and electrical properties regardless of deposition technique. Increased temperatures above 200 °C were found to have a negative impact on the electrical properties, with a corresponding increase in infrared transmission. Visible transmission was found to be good (above 79 %) for all films except those deposited using DC power at room temperature. The DC sputtering process was stable and was found to approximately double the deposition rate with no corresponding drop in film quality for films deposited at moderate temperatures. This makes DC deposition more industrially attractive when process temperature is not a concern. For room temperature depositions, RF was found to produce superior transmission and electrical characteristics.


The authors would like to acknowledge funding for the work through the EPSRC Supergen Supersolar Hub.



  • Mechanical, Electrical and Manufacturing Engineering

Published in

IEEE PVSC 42 Photovoltaic Specialist Conference (PVSC), 2015 IEEE 42nd


ISHERWOOD, P.J.M. ... et al., 2015. Comparison of DC and RF sputtered aluminium-doped zinc oxide for photovoltaic applications. IN: Proceedings of the IEEE 42nd Photovoltaic Specialist Conference (PVSC), New Orleans, USA, 14-19 June 2015, 5pp.




AM (Accepted Manuscript)

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