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Applied Optics

Applied Optics


  • Editor: Joseph N. Mait
  • Vol. 51, Iss. 27 — Sep. 20, 2012
  • pp: 6498–6507

Effect of postdeposition annealing on the structure, composition, and the mechanical and optical characteristics of niobium and tantalum oxide films

Eda Çetinörgü-Goldenberg, Jolanta-Ewa Klemberg-Sapieha, and Ludvik Martinu  »View Author Affiliations

Applied Optics, Vol. 51, Issue 27, pp. 6498-6507 (2012)

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Optical, mechanical, and thermal properties of optical thin films are very important for a reliable device performance. In the present work, the effect of annealing on the stability and the characteristics of niobium and tantalum oxide films grown at room temperature (RT) by dual ion beam sputtering were studied. The refractive index (n(λ)), extinction coefficient (k(λ)), hardness (H), reduced Young’s modulus (Er), and film stress (σ) were investigated as a function of the annealing temperature (TA). X-ray diffraction analysis showed that all as-deposited films were amorphous, and crystallization was observed only after annealing at 700°C. Compositional analyses confirmed that the atomic ratio of oxygen to metal in as-deposited and annealed films was close to 2.5, indicating that the films were stoichiometric pentoxides of Nb and Ta. The properties of Nb2O5 and Ta2O5 films were, respectively, affected by postdeposition annealing: n(λ) values (at 550 nm) decreased from 2.30 to 2.20 and from 2.14 to 2.08, the average H and Er values increased from 5.6 to 7.4 GPa, and from 121 to 132 GPa for Nb2O5, and from 6.5 to 8.3 GPa, and from 132 to 144 GPa for Ta2O5, and the initial low compressive stress for both materials changed to tensile. We explain the variation of the coating material properties in terms of film stoichiometry, crystallinity, electronic structure, and possible reactions at the film–substrate interface.

© 2012 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(310.1860) Thin films : Deposition and fabrication
(310.3840) Thin films : Materials and process characterization
(310.6860) Thin films : Thin films, optical properties
(310.6870) Thin films : Thin films, other properties

ToC Category:
Thin Films

Original Manuscript: July 25, 2012
Revised Manuscript: July 30, 2012
Manuscript Accepted: July 31, 2012
Published: September 13, 2012

Eda Çetinörgü-Goldenberg, Jolanta-Ewa Klemberg-Sapieha, and Ludvik Martinu, "Effect of postdeposition annealing on the structure, composition, and the mechanical and optical characteristics of niobium and tantalum oxide films," Appl. Opt. 51, 6498-6507 (2012)

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