Study of sputtered ZnO modified by Direct Laser Interference Patterning: Structural characterization and temperature simulation
ZnO thin film sputtered on alumina substrate is processed by Direct Laser Interference Patterning (DLIP). The heat transfer equation has been simulated for interference patterns with a period of 730 nm and two different fluences (85 mJ/cm2 and 165 mJ/cm2). A thermal threshold of 900 K, where crystal modification occurs has been calculated, indicating a lateral and depth processing around 173 nm and 140 nm, respectively. The experimentally reproduced samples have been analyzed from the structural and composition point of view and compared to conventional thermal treatments at three different temperatures (600 ºC, 700 ºC and 800 ºC). Promising properties have been observed for the laser treated samples, such as low influence on the thin film/substrate interface, an improvement of the crystallographic structure, as well as a decrease of the oxygen content from O/Zn = 2.10 to 1.38 for the highest fluence, getting closer to the stoichiometry. The DLIP characteristics could be suitable for the replacement of annealing process in the case of substrates that cannot achieve high temperatures as most of flexible substrates.