Stabilization of indium tin oxide films to very high temperatures

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Date of Original Version



Thin film strain gages based on indium-tin-oxide (ITO) are being developed to measure to static and dynamic strain at temperatures approaching 1500°C. These ceramic strain gages exhibit excellent oxidation resistance and high temperature stability, surviving more than 25 hours of testing in air at 1470°C. Electron spectroscopy for chemical analysis (ESCA) studies indicated that interfacial reactions between ITO and alumina can increase the stability of ITO at elevated temperature. Solid state diffusion of aluminum into the ITO at these temperatures can produce a very stable ITO/Al2O3 solid solution. To determine the nature of the interfacial reaction product, ITO films were deposited onto both Al2O3 and AIN surfaces and thermally cycled to 1500°C. AIN films were used to reduce/eliminate oxygen transport to the interface, so that aluminum-indium interactions alone could be studied. ITO films were deposited onto Al2O3 and AIN films, which were rf sputtered on platinum-coated alumina substrates. The resulting ESCA depth files showed that an interfacial reaction had occurred between the ITO and the Al2O3 and AIN. The presence of two new indium-indium peaks at 448.85 and 456.40eV, corresponding to the indium 3d5 and 3d3 binding energies were observed in both cases; i.e. the AIN and the Al2O3. These binding energies are significantly higher than those associated with stoichiometric indium oxide. In addition, aluminum doped ITO films were formed by co-sputtering from multiple targets and electrical stability of these films was compared to undoped ITO films over the same temperature range (25-1500°C).

Publication Title

Materials Research Society Symposium - Proceedings



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