A theoretical analysis of the electronic properties of tin dioxide surface

Weronika Izydorczyk 1Bogusława Adamowicz 2Marcin Miczek 2Krzysztof Waczynski 1Jerzy Uljanow 1

1. Silesian University of Technology, Institute of Electronics, Akademicka 16, Gliwice 44-100, Poland
2. Silesian University of Technology, Institute of Physics, Department of Applied Physics, Krzywoustego 2, Gliwice 44-100, Poland


Tin dioxide is one of the most studied semiconductor metal oxides because of its various applications in gas sensors, solar cells, optical devices, transparent electrodes etc. due to interesting optical, electronic and thermal properties of SnO2. In most of these structures the surface electronic status of SnO2 layers plays crucial role. However, the standard models of electrical effects in SnO2 layers are usually simplified and neglect the contribution of surface states to charge transport phenomena [1].

The aim of this work is a rigorous theoretical analysis of the influence of surface states on the conductance of SnO2 layers with a thickness larger than the Debye length. In the calculations different continuous and discrete surface state distributions in the energy gap were assumed. From the one-dimensional numerical solution of the Poisson equation, the detailed in-depth profiles of the potential barrier V(x) and carrier concentrations n(x) and p(x) were obtained. Then, the values of surface potential, surface charge, Fermi level position and layer conductance were determined. These magnitudes were calculated for different bulk doping and carrier mobility. In addition, the surface fixed charge representing adsorbed ions or surface delta-doping was introduced to modify the band bending and layer conductance. Furthermore, the influence of temperature on near-surface region and conductance with assumption of non-mobile bulk donors was studied. The temperature dependence of the effective density of states, carriers mobility and concentration of donors was included into account for temperature dependent modeling. The results of theoretical analysis were compared with experimental data obtained from measurements of the SnO2 sensor response to the changes of NO2 concentration in synthetic air.

[1] N.Barsan, U.Weimar, J. Electroceramics, 7 (2001) 143

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Presentation: poster at E-MRS Fall Meeting 2005, Symposium F, by Weronika Izydorczyk
See On-line Journal of E-MRS Fall Meeting 2005

Submitted: 2005-05-19 07:58
Revised:   2009-06-07 00:44
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