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Evaluation of graphene as a transparent electrode in GaN-based LEDs by PECVD synthesis of graphene directly on GaN
Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Physics.
2016 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesisAlternative title
Utvärdering av grafen som transparent elektrod i GaN-baserade LEDs genom PECVD-syntes av grafen direkt på GaN (Swedish)
Abstract [en]

A transparent conductive electrode (TCE) is an important component in many of our modern optoelectronic devices like photovoltaics, light emitting diodes and touch screens. These devices require good current injection and spreading as well as a high transparency. In this thesis we explore the use of graphene as an alternative to the current widely used indium tin oxide (ITO) as TCE in gallium nitride (GaN) based light emitting diodes (LEDs). Monolayer crystalline graphene can be produced on copper foils using chemical vapor deposition (CVD), where metals (especially copper) has a catalysing effect on the formation of graphene. However, transfer of graphene from copper foils is not suitable for an industrial scale and it results in a poor contact with the target substrate. We investigate the possibility of directly integrating graphene on GaN-based LEDs by using plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD). We try to obtain the optimal conditions under these catalyst-free circumstances and propose a recipe adapted for the setup that we used. We will also study ideas of using a metal (we tried copper and nickel) to assist the direct growth that could help to increase the fraction of sp2 carbon bonds and reduce the sheet resistance. The metals are evaporated onto our samples either before or after we grow a carbon film to either assist the growth or rearrange the carbon respectively. The focus was not on trying to optimize the conditions for one metal treatment but rather to briefly explore multiple methods to find a suitable path for further studies. The direct grown pristine carbon films shows indications from Raman measurements of being nanocrystalline graphene with a sheet resistance ranging from about 20-50 kΩ/sq having a transmittance of approximately 96 % at 550 nm. A transmittance at this level is closely related to the value of an ideal monolayer graphene, which indicates that our carbon films could be close to one atom in thickness while being visually homogeneous and complete in coverage. Due to the use of a temperature close to the melting point of copper we struggled to keep the assisting copper from evaporating too fast or staying homogeneous after the treatment. Nickel has a higher melting temperature, but it appears as if this metal might be diffusing into the GaN substrate which changes the properties of both the GaN and carbon film. Even though the metal treatments that we tested did not provide any noticeable improvements, there is need for further investigations to obtain suitable treatment conditions. We suggest that the treatments involving copper are a more promising path to pursue as nickel seem to cause unavoidable intermixing problems.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. , 39 p.
Keyword [en]
PECVD, graphene, transparent electrode, gallium nitride, LED
National Category
Nano Technology
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-120731OAI: diva2:929786
Subject / course
Examensarbete i teknisk fysik
Educational program
Master of Science Programme in Engineering Physics
Available from: 2016-05-20 Created: 2016-05-19 Last updated: 2016-05-20Bibliographically approved

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