Ukrainian Journal of Physical Optics 

Volume 21, Issue 3, 2020

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Effect of picosecond-laser irradiation on the properties of nanostructured aluminium-doped zinc oxide thin films 

1Khan M. N., 1Almohammedi A. and 2Farooq W. A.

1Department of Physics, Faculty of Science, Islamic University, Madinah 42351,   Saudi Arabia,
2Department of Physics and Astron, College of Science, King Saud University,   Riyadh 11451, Saudi Arabia

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Abstract. Thin films of nanostructured zinc oxide doped with aluminium of different concentrations are synthesized on glass substrates, using a spin-coated sol–gel method. The effect of picosecond-laser irradiation on these thin films is studied using different optical techniques. Their structural and optical properties are investigated using X-ray diffraction, near-visible and infrared absorption spectra and photoluminescence. Optical bandgap values are calculated using a Tauc’s method. Slight variation in the relative intensity of X-ray diffraction and broadening of the lines are observed as a result of laser irradiation that causes some disorder in crystallinity. The relative intensities of the absorption and emission spectra decrease with increasing percentage of aluminium and laser-exposure time. The value of this decrease depends on the dopant concentration. Moreover, the emission reveals a slight red shift. The size of nanocrystals also changes at different Al doping percentages and exposure times. The reduction of the relative intensities mentioned above is attributed to changing nanocrystal sizes and structure of a surface layer.

Keywords: ZnO thin films, X-ray diffraction, optical absorption, bandgap, emission, laser irradiation

UDC: 535.21
Ukr. J. Phys. Opt. 21 126-140
doi: 10.3116/16091833/21/3/126/2020
Received: 20.01.2020

Анотація.  Тонкі плівки наноструктурованого оксиду цинку, легованого алюмінієм різної концентрації, синтезовано на скляних підкладках за допомогою процесу золь-гель із покриттям, одержаним за методом центрифугування. Вплив пікосекундного лазерного опромінення на ці тонкі плівки вивчено різними оптичними методиками. Їхні структурні та оптичні властивості з’ясовано шляхом досліджень рентгенівської дифракції, видимого та інфрачервоного спектрів поглинання, а також фотолюмінесценції. Величину оптичної щілини обчислено за методом Таука. Виявлено незначні зміни у відносній інтенсивності рентгенівської дифракції та розширення ліній як результат лазерного опромінення, яке викликає певний розлад кристалічної будови. Відносні інтенсивності спектрів поглинання та випромінювання зменшуються зі зростанням відсоткового складу алюмінію та часу лазерної експозиції. Величина цього зменшення залежить від концентрації легуючої речовини. Крім того, явище емісії виявляє незначний червоний зсув. Розмір нанокристалів також змінюється зі змінами відсотку алюмінію та часу експозиції. Пониження відносної інтенсивності, згадане вище, пояснюється зміною розмірів нанокристалів та структури поверхневого шару.

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