Fabrication of GdxFeyOz films using an atomic layer deposition-type approach†
The growth of complex oxide thin films with atomic precision offers bright prospects to study improved properties and novel functionalities. Here we tackle the fabrication of gadolinium iron oxide thin films by an atomic layer deposition-type approach in which iron and gadolinium tailor-made metalorganic precursors (bis(N-isopropyl ketoiminate)iron(II), [Fe(ipki)2] and tris(N,N′-diisopropyl-2-dimethylamido-guanidinato)gadolinium(III), [Gd(DPDMG)3]) are alternately reacted with ozone and deposited on silicon substrates at 250 °C. The structure, chemical composition and magnetic properties of the resulting films are compared with those obtained from a commercially available ferrocene precursor [Fe(Cp)2] and [Gd(DPDMG)3]. All films resulted in cation ratio close to nominal stoichiometry with negligible amount of organic species. The tailor-made metalorganic precursors, designed to provide similar thermal behavior, result in the formation of polycrystalline Gd3Fe5O12 films coexisting with GdFeO3, Gd2O3 and Fe2O3 whereas the combination of [Fe(Cp)2] and [Gd(DPDMG)3] mainly favors the formation of Gd3Fe5O12 films coexisting with traces of Gd2O3. This study demonstrates that this is a viable route to prepare complex GdxFeyOz films and could be used for the design of complex oxide films with improved properties upon rigorous study of the compatibility of metalorganic precursors.
- This article is part of the themed collection: Crystal Growth