Piezoelectric Properties of Zinc Oxide Thin Films Grown by Plasma‐Enhanced Atomic Layer Deposition

Taher Abu Ali, Julian Pilz, Philipp Schäffner, Markus Kratzer, Christian Teichert , Barbara Stadlober, Anna Maria Coclite*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Zinc oxide (ZnO) thin films are deposited by plasma‐enhanced atomic layer deposition (PE‐ALD). This deposition method allows depositing stoichiometric and highly resistive ZnO films at room temperature. Despite such important requirements for piezoelectricity being met, not much is known in literature about the piezoelectric properties of ZnO thin films (<70 nm) deposited by PE‐ALD. The films are grown at different substrate temperatures to investigate the effect on crystalline and piezoelectric properties. Films deposited on flexible poly(ethylene terephthalate) (PET) generated a higher piezoelectric current (>1.8 nA) and charge (>80 pC) compared with films deposited on glass (>0.3 nA and >30 pC) due to bending effects of the substrate when mechanically excited. Furthermore, increasing the substrate temperature, during deposition, enhances the growth along the (002) crystallographic orientation, which further strengthens the generated piezoelectric current signal for mechanical excitations along the ZnO film's c‐axis.
Original languageEnglish
Article number2000319
Number of pages6
JournalPhysica Status Solidi (A) - Applications and Materials Science
Issue number21
Early online date26 Aug 2020
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2020


  • atomic layer deposition
  • piezoelectricity
  • thin films
  • zinc oxide

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Materials Chemistry
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Surfaces and Interfaces

Fields of Expertise

  • Advanced Materials Science

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