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Study of nanocrystalline titanium oxide thin films by thermal annealing

Z.W. Zhao and B.K. Tay
Nanyang Technological University, SG

Keywords:
anatase, Raman scattering, photocatalysis

Abstract:
The film properties of titanium oxide thin films were studied after the as-grown amorphous films were annealed at different temperatures (200oC ~ 1000oC). Nano-sized anatase polycrystallites had been induced by thermal annealing for the films annealed at and above 300oC as confirmed by XRD. Strong LO-phonon Raman modes, especially B1g (395 cm-1) and Eg (636 cm-1) in Raman spectrum and the presence of absorption peak at 436 cm-1 in Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) indicate the existence of anatase phase in crystalline thin films. It is also found that as increasing the annealing temperature, the wettability of the film surface is enhanced as concluded by the decrease of contact angle with water from more than 90o to less than 40o. Moreover, it is interesting to note that the contact angle of as low as low as 10o with water after UV laser treatment on film surface implies the forming a hydrophilic surface, which was ascribed to the absorption of hydroxyl groups on the surface by the photocatalysis reactions of TiO2. This behavior makes the film a good potential candidate for self-clean coatings.

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