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Characterization of nano-porosity in molecular layer deposited films


Molecular layer deposition (MLD) delivers (ultra-) thin organic and hybrid materials, with atomic-level thickness control. However, such layers are often reported to be unstable in ambient conditions, due to the interaction of water and oxygen with the hybrid structure, consequently limiting their applications. In this contribution we investigate the impact of porosity in MLD layers on their degradation. Alucone layers were deposited by means of trimethylaluminum and ethylene glycol, adopting both temporal and spatial MLD and characterized by means of FT-IR spectroscopy, spectroscopic ellipsometry, and ellipsometric porosimetry. The highest growth per cycle (GPC) achieved by spatial MLD resulted in alucone layers with very low stability in ambient air, leading to their conversion to AlOx. Alucones deposited by means of temporal MLD, instead, showed lower GPC and a higher ambient stability. Ellipsometric porosimetry showed the presence of open nano-porosity in pristine alucone layers. Pores with a diameter in the range 0.42-2 nm were probed, with a relative content between 1.5% and 5%, respectively attributed to the temporal and spatial MLD layers. We concluded that a correlation exists between the process GPC, the open-porosity relative content, and the degradation of alucone layers.

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Publication details

The article was received on 30 Mar 2018, accepted on 09 May 2018 and first published on 14 May 2018

Article type: Communication
DOI: 10.1039/C8DT01246F
Citation: Dalton Trans., 2018, Accepted Manuscript
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    Characterization of nano-porosity in molecular layer deposited films

    A. Perrotta, P. Poodt, F. J. van den Bruele , W. Kessels and M. Creatore, Dalton Trans., 2018, Accepted Manuscript , DOI: 10.1039/C8DT01246F

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