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Determination of grain size in indium tin oxide films by optical means

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Indium tin oxide (ITO) is a commercially important transparent conductive material commonly used in antistatic and transparent electrode applications. Its optical, electronic and environmental properties are affected by the degree of crystallinity and grain size. Thus determination of the grain size is an important factor in developing a stable, repeatable ITO process. Grain measurement is typically accomplished by x-ray diffraction or electron microscopy. Electron microscopy of ITO films is difficult because electron beam heating of the samples can cause recrystallization. X-ray diffraction is not commonly available to most process engineers and data analysis can be cumbersome if film stress is present. Thus we looked at optical techniques that were compatible with our existing measurements and equipment to determine grain size.

© 1995 Optical Society of America

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