Cathode hysteresis in the reactive pulsed dc sputtering of a vanadium metal target was investigated to correlate the structural and electrical properties of the resultant vanadium oxide thin films within the framework of Berg's model [Berg, J. Vac. Sci. Technol. A 5, 202 (1987)]. The process hysteresis during reactive pulsed dc sputtering of a vanadium metal target was monitored by measuring the cathode (target) current under different total gas flow rates and oxygen-to-argon ratios for a power density of ∼6.6.W/cm 2. Approximately 20%-25% hysteretic change in the cathode current was noticed between the metallic and oxidized states of the V-metal target. The extent of the hysteresis varied with changes in the mass flow of oxygen as predicted by Berg's model. The corresponding microstructure of the films changed from columnar to equiaxed grain structure with increased oxygen flow rates. Micro-Raman spectroscopy indicates subtle changes in the film structure as a function of processing conditions. The resistivity, temperature coefficient of resistance, and charge transport mechanism, obeying the Meyer-Neldel relation [Meyer and Neldel, Z. Tech. Phys. (Leipzig) 12, 588 (1937)], were correlated with the cathode current hysteric behavior.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Journal||Journal of Vacuum Science and Technology A: Vacuum, Surfaces and Films|
|State||Published - Nov 2011|
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Condensed Matter Physics
- Surfaces and Interfaces
- Surfaces, Coatings and Films