Thin-film electroluminescent devices are promising solid-state lighting devices. Red light-emitting phosphor is the key component to be integrated with the well-established blue light-emitting diode chips for stimulating natural sunlight. However, environmentally hazardous rare-earth (RE) dopants, e.g. Eu2+ and Ce2+, are commonly used for red-emitting phosphors. Mg2TiO4 inverse spinel has been reported as a promising matrix material for “RE-free” red light luminescent material. In this paper, Mg2TiO4 inverse spinel is investigated using both experimental and theoretical approaches. The Mg2TiO4 thin films were deposited on Si (100) substrates using either spin-coating with the sol–gel process, or radio frequency sputtering, and annealed at various temperatures ranging from 600°C to 900°C. The crystallinity, microstructures, and photoluminescent properties of the Mg2TiO4 thin films were characterized. In addition, the atomistic model of the Mg2TiO4 inverse spinel was constructed, and the electronic band structure of Mg2TiO4 was calculated based on density functional theory. Essential physical and optoelectronic properties of the Mg2TiO4 luminance material as well as its optimal thin-film processing conditions were comprehensively reported.
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