Development of high performance uncooled infrared detector materials

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2011
Kebapçı, Başak
This thesis reports both the optimizations of the vanadium oxide (VOx) thin film as an active infrared detector material by the magnetron sputtering deposition method and its use during fabrication of proper resistors for the microbolometers. Vanadium oxide is a preferred material for microbolometers, as it provides high TCR value, low noise, and reasonable resistance, and a number of high-tech companies have used this material to obtain state-of-the-art microbolometer arrays. This material is first used in microbolometers by Honeywell, who provides its recipe with license agreements, and there is not much information in the literature for its deposition recipe. This is the first study at METU for development of vanadium oxide thin film for microbolometers. The VOx material deposition studies started by identifying the deposition parameters of the magnetron sputtering system in order to obtain proper VOx resistors for the readout electronics. The obtained recipe includes high temperature deposition conditions of VOx, however, this causes a diffusion problem on the electrodes, preventing to obtain a good contact to VOx. Also, high oxygen level in the depositions makes a contamination on the electrodes. A number of studies were done to determine a proper electrode material which is proper with the deposition conditions of the VOx. Characterization of the vanadium oxide samples is done by XRD and XPS measurements to see the relation between the phases and resistivity of the vanadium oxide. It is known that V2O5 phase provides a high TCR and resistivity value, and the XRD results show that this phase is dominant in the highly-oxygen doped or annealed resistors. The TCR and noise measurements are done using resistors implemented with the developed VOx film, after the etching processes of the both VOx and the electrodes are optimized. The contamination on the electrodes is prevented by the help of a newly designed process. The TCR measurement results show that annealing of the resistors affect the TCR values, i.e., increasing the annealing duration increases the TCR values of the resistors. Two different resistors with different deposition conditions are annealed to see the effect of annealing, where TCR results of the resistors are -0.74%/K and -0.8 %/K before annealing. The TCR values of these resistors increase to -1.6 %/K and -4.35 %K, respectively, after annealing in same conditions, showing that both the deposition conditions and annealing change the TCR significantly. Although good TCR values are obtained, the noise values of the VOx resistors are much higher than the expected values, which suggest a further study to determine the cause of this noise.

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Citation Formats
B. Kebapçı, “Development of high performance uncooled infrared detector materials,” M.S. - Master of Science, Middle East Technical University, 2011.