Oxide Materials for the Post-Silicon Electronics Era


Orama presents a holistic approach to model, synthesize, characterize and certify oxides for electronic applications to overcome the limits of silicon based electronics and to catapult the electronics industry into a new era of growth. It aims towards new classes of materials, the p- and n-type Active Semiconductor Oxides (ASO), passive n-type amorphous Transparent Conducting Oxides (a-TCOs) and p-n type junctions based on the above. These materials will be certified for device concepts highlighting the potential of oxides as electronic materials in the automotive industry. This is a highly competitive environment of high importance for Europe’s economy and with challenging demands on information technology such as sensors, displays and energy sources to provide sustainable mobility for the European society.

Orama will develop new models and characterization techniques to help understand the fundamental and active properties of oxide materials. Work on precursor materials and deposition / growth processes is aimed at achieving full control of the material properties. The structure of materials at the nano-level is then addressed - both thin films and nanowires are investigated to determine their effects on the material functionality. Harnessing electronic (e.g. semiconducting behaviour, gas sensitivity) and optoelectronic (light emission, color conversion) functionalities is achieved through integration in proof of concept devices. This requires mastering interfaces between oxides with different properties and between oxides and substrates such as ceramics, silicon and polymers.

It will achieve this by addressing four key topics relevant for electronic oxide material development

  • First principle modelling of oxide materials: Enables us to predict the relevant electronic film properties such as electronic structure, doping and defect mechanisms.
  • Synthesis of new n- and p-type ASOs, new amorphous TCOs and oxide based p-n junctions.
  • Low temperature, damage free deposition and patterning techniques to integrate the new material in device concepts and to certify the functionality for applications foreseen in the field of display and sensor applications, flexible electronics and UV-optoelectronics.
  • Metrology: Orama will advance the characterization techniques formerly used for Si semiconductors towards metal oxides at the nanoscale level.

Orama will also investigate into novel processing techniques for oxide electronics, such as atomic layer deposition (ALD), high power impulse magnetron sputtering (HIPIMS) and patterned deposition by means of patterned Sol-Gel and Ink-Jet printing.

The oxide materials developed in Orama have a high potential to enable new electronic/IT products by enabling current Si-based functionalities to be implemented on flexible substrates and owing to their intrinsic transparent properties. This will enable the development, for example, of flexible transparent displays. However these materials and associated technologies also have two major advantages over conventional electronics: reduced cost and reduced environmental impact. The potential impact is therefore much greater as a replacement technology for current Si-based systems. Orama will undertake training of researchers: summer schools will be implemented in the context of the international TCM (Transparent Conducting Materials) symposium 2010 and 2012 held at FORTH in Crete.

Issues related to safety and sustainability of the new materials and devices will be considered taking the expertise of the automotive industry into account.

© 2017 by Fraunhofer IST
Last modified on: 2017-06-06 11:05:27 CEST
Source: http://orama-fp7.eu/en/overview