Electrical properties of sputtered-indium tin oxide film contacts on n-type GaN

J. D. Hwang, C. C. Lin, W. L. Chen

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8 Citations (Scopus)


A transparent indium tin oxide (ITO) Ohmic contact on n-type gallium nitride (GaN) (dopant concentration of 2 × 1017 cm -3) having a specific contact resistance of 4.2 × 10 -6 Ω cm2 was obtained. In this study, ITO film deposition method was implemented by sputtering. We found that the barrier height, 0.68 eV, between ITO and n-type GaN is the same for both evaporated- and sputtered-ITO films. However, the 0.68 eV in barrier height renders the evaporated-ITO/n-GaN Schottky contact. This behavior is different from that of our sputtered-ITO/N-GaN, i.e., Ohmic contact. During sputtering, oxygen atoms on the GaN surface were significantly removed, thereby resulting in an improvement in contact resistance. Moreover, a large number of nitrogen (N) vacancies, caused by sputtering, were produced near the GaN surface. These N vacancies acted as donors for electrons, thus affecting a heavily doped n-type formed at the subsurface below the sputtered ITO/n-GaN. Both oxygen removal and heavy doping near the GaN surface, caused by N vacancies, in turn led to a reduction in contact resistivity as a result of electrons tunneling across the depletion layer from the ITO to the n-type GaN. All explanations are given by Auger analysis and x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy.

Original languageEnglish
Article number044908
JournalJournal of Applied Physics
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2006 Sep 11

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)

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