Structure formation and electrical properties of thin films: The Ce-Ti-O system
September 4-8, 2016
Recently Nagarajan et al. found a new type of chemically driven insulator-metal transition in non-stoichiometric gallium oxide films (GaOx) . Leichtweiß et al.  showed a similar behavior for non-stoichiometric titania (TiO1.6) films. Both oxides disproportionate during heating and relax into the thermodynamically stable phases. A similar approach has been applied to ternary oxides like ITO . Davila et al. produced a nanocomposite and highly oxygen deficient ITO film. Due to its non-stoichiometry the thin film separates directly into a stoichiometric matrix (In1.8Sn0.2O3) which contains metallic clusters (In1.8Sn0.2). This can be explained by the absence of stable suboxides in the system In-Sn-O.
Figure 1 highlights the general experimental approach: Depositing metastable and non-stoichiometric oxide thin films followed by a heating step makes it possible to study the reaction pathways during relaxation into the thermodynamically stable state by various in and ex situ techniques.
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Ralph Andreas Henning, Thomas Leichtweiß, and Jürgen Janek, "Structure formation and electrical properties of thin films: The Ce-Ti-O system" in "Nonstoichiometric Compounds VI", ECI Symposium Series, (2016). https://dc.engconfintl.org/nonstoichiometric_vi/40