Plasma-Enhanced Atomic Layer Deposition of Zirconium Oxide Thin Films and Its Application to Solid Oxide Fuel Cells
Zirconium oxides were deposited using plasma-enhanced atomic layer deposition (PEALD) involving (2-(N-methylamino)1-MethylEthyleneCyclopentadienyl)Bis(DiMethylAmino)Zr (abbreviated as CMEN-Zr) and oxygen plasma as zirconium and oxygen sources. The zirconium oxide thin films demonstrate temperature-independent growth rates per cycle of 0.94 A/cycle at 150–215 °C. The deposited ZrO2 thin films were characterized using numerous analytical tools, i.e., X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy for chemical
... onding state and composition, X-ray diffraction for crystallinity, atomic force microscopy for surface morphology, field-emission scanning electron microscopy for cross-sectional analysis, spectroscopic ellipsometry and UV–visible spectrophotometry for optical characterization, capacitance–voltage measurements for dielectric constants and atomic defects, and current–voltage characteristics for electrical information. The insulating features of the crystalline and stoichiometric ZrO2 films were implemented in the anode composites to evaluate the influence of ALD-based nano-features on the electrochemical performance of solid oxide fuel cells, with the main emphasis on anode performance. The presence of nanomaterials on Ni/YSZ anode composites is analyzed to determine the negative effects on electrochemical performance and the degradation of cell performance of solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs). The artificial design was proven to be effective in controlling the cell performance as long as proper material design was adopted in SOFC electrodes.