Thickness Dependent Structural and Electrical Properties of Magnetron Sputtered Nanostructured CrN Thin Films


Mat. Res.




In the present work, we have investigated the structural and electrical properties of CrN thin films for a thickness t in the 30-220 nm range, grown on Si (100) substrates. The CrN/Si (100) films exhibits a structural transition from hexagonal phase (β-Cr2N) to cubic phase (CrN) with the increasing in film thickness, the change in structural transition is attributed to the decrease of film-substrate interfacial strain. From electrical resistivity measurements, the thickness of 150 nm CrN/Si (100) film shown the metal-semiconductor phase transition at around 250 K with energy band gap (Eg) 81 meV in semiconducting region, whereas the thickness of 30, 110 and 220 nm CrN/Si(100) films were shown only semiconducting behaviour for whole temperature range of 50-400 K. On the other hand, a clear grain size was increased in CrN/Si films with increasing thickness and its influence on transport properties was also seen. The possibility of phase transition and occurrence of semiconducting behaviour in the CrN films were analysed.

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