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Nanostructured materials represent a breakthrough in many fields of application. Above all for sensing, the use of nanostructures with a high surface/volume ratio is strategic to raise the sensitivity towards dangerous environmental gas species. A new Dc-Reactive sputtering Deposition method has been applied to grow highly porous p-type nitrogen-doped titanium oxide layers by modifying the previously developed reactive sputtering method called gig-lox. The doping of the films was achieved at room temperature by progressive incorporation of nitrogen species during the deposition process. Two different amounts of N 2 were introduced into the deposition chamber at flow rates of 2 and 5 standard cubic centimeter per minutes (sccm) for doping. It has been found that the N 2 uptake reduces the deposition rate of the TiO 2 film whilst the porosity and the roughness of the grown layer are not penalized. Despite the low amount of N 2, using 2 sccm of gas resulted in proper doping of the TiO 2 film as revealed by XPS Analyses. In this case, nitrogen atoms are mainly arranged in substitutional positions with respect to the oxygen atoms inside the lattice, and this defines the p-type character of the growing layer. Above this strategic structural modification, the multibranched spongy porosity, peculiar of the gig-lox growth, is still maintained. As proof of concept of the achievements, a sensing device was prepared by combining this modified gig-lox deposition method with state-of-the-art hot-plate technology to monitor the electrical response to ethanol gas species. The sensor exhibited a sensitivity of a factor of≈ 2 to 44 ppm of ethanol at≈ 200 C as …
Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute
Publication date: 
1 Mar 2019

Emanuele Smecca, Salvatore Sanzaro, Clelia Galati, Lucio Renna, Leonardo Gervasi, Antonello Santangelo, Guglielmo Guido Condorelli, David Grosso, Thomas Bottein, Giovanni Mannino, Antonino La Magna, Alessandra Alberti

Biblio References: 
Volume: 7 Issue: 1 Pages: 12