Study on porosity in zinc oxide ultrathin films from three‐step mld zn‐hybrid polymers

Richard Berger, Martin Seiler, Alberto Perrotta, Anna Maria Coclite*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Deriving mesoporous ZnO from calcinated, molecular layer deposited (MLD) metal-organic hybrid thin films offers various advantages, e.g., tunable crystallinity and porosity, as well as great film conformality and thickness control. However, such methods have barely been investigated. In this contribution, zinc‐organic hybrid layers were for the first time formed via a three‐step MLD sequence, using diethylzinc, ethanolamine, and maleic anhydride. These zinc‐organic hybrid films were then calcinated with the aim of enhancing the porosity of the obtained ZnO films. The saturation curves for the three‐step MLD process were measured, showing a growth rate of 4.4 ± 0.2 Å/cycle. After initial degradation, the zinc‐organic layers were found to be stable in ambient air. The transformation behavior of the zinc‐organic layers, i.e., the evolution of the film thickness and refractive index as well as the pore formation upon heating to 400, 500, and 600 °C were investigated with the help of spectroscopic ellipsometry and ellipsometric porosimetry. The calculated pore size distribution showed open porosity values of 25%, for the sample calcinated at 400 °C. The corresponding expectation value for the pore radius obtained from this distribution was 2.8 nm.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1418
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2 Mar 2021


  • Molecular layer deposition
  • Porosimetric ellipsometry
  • Porous materials
  • Zinc oxide

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)

Fields of Expertise

  • Advanced Materials Science

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