Conductive and Opto-Electrical Antimony Tin Oxide Coatings for Particulate Materials

Researcher: Prof Ovadia Lev
Department: Faculty of Science, The Institute of Chemistry
University: Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Overview

Antimony tin oxide is one of the most commonly used transparent conducting oxide as it has two key characteristics that include optical transparency and electrical conductivity. These properties are very essential for optoelectronic devices including solar cells and flat-panel displays.

Techniques that are presently used for particle and nanoparticle tin oxide formation as well as for providing surface coatings using acidic media, however it has become very essential to coat acid sensitive materials with nanoparticulate antimony-doped tin oxide (ATO) films.

This particular technology comes under the categories that include materials, nanotechnology, cleantech, coatings, nanoparticles, energy, solar, electronic, optic, photonic and electrooptic. The technology is still at the proof of concept stage and research is ongoing. US patent application has been filed.

Innovation

The research proposes a generic technique for the coating of a number of surfaces, including acid-sensitive crystals (LiNbO3 and calcite) from a stable, organic, ligand-free, hydroperoxostannate and -antimonate solution.

Key Features

The key features of this method include the following:

  • The method is useful for coating small entities since ATO nano-particle formation takes place only on surfaces, with nil particle growth taking place in the solution.
  • Uniform coating of various clays and other irregular configurations by monosized 5 nm ATO particles was shown from an organic ligand-free solution.

Figure: SEM (left) and TEM (right) micrographs of ATO-coated sepiolite (a and b), porous sol-gel silica powder (c and d), and calcite (e and f). Five nm crystalline ATO particles are visible in the TEM figures.

Applications

The applications of Doped tin oxide coatings are listed below:

  • sensors
  • catalysis
  • smart (heated) windows
  • touch panel displays
  • voltage-dependent resistors
  • LED devices
  • solar cells
  • polymer solar cells

Current Status

Presently industry cooperation is being sought to enable development and commercialization of the technique.

About Hebrew University of Jerusalem

The Hebrew University of Jerusalem was founded in 1925 and the Institute of Chemistry was the first of its kind to be established in the country at that time. Dr Chaim Weizmann, the State of Israel’s first President played a major role in establishing the Institute of Chemistry.

This institute was the first in the Science Faculty and was established along with the Institute of Judaism to lay special emphasis on the general importance of natural science and especially of chemistry.

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