Production and characterization of zinc oxide thin films for room temperature ozone sensing

M. Bender, E. Gagaoudakis, E. Douloufakis, E. Natsakou, N. Katsarakis, V. Cimalla, G. Kiriakidis, E. Fortunato, P. Nunes, A. Marques, R. Martins

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84 Citations (Scopus)


The room temperature ozone sensing properties of polycrystalline undoped zinc oxide (ZnO) thin films have been investigated. ZnO thin films have been produced by the d.c. and r.f. magnetron sputtering technique as well as with spray pyrolysis with a variety of parameters. The as-grown films were brought to a high conducting state through a reversible photoreduction process by UV light exposure and were subsequently exposed to ozone resulting in a strong resistivity increase caused by re-oxidation. The magnitude of the effect was largest for the sputtered films, which exhibited resistivity changes of more than 8 orders of magnitude, whereas films deposited by spray pyrolysis showed changes of less than 3 orders of magnitude. XRD and AFM analysis of the films revealed that all films were microcrystalline. The film texture, however, was strongly related to the growth technique and the parameters used. Best results were achieved with r.f.-sputtered films, which have been deposited at high total pressures. These films exhibited a sensor response of 1.2 × 108.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)45-50
Number of pages6
JournalThin Solid Films
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2002


  • Magnetron sputtering techniques
  • Microcrystalline
  • Polycrystalline undoped zinc oxide
  • Spray pyrolysis
  • UV light exposure

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