Compositional analysis and depth profiling of thin film CrO2 by heavy ion ERDA and standard RBS: a comparison

14 Sep 2020

Chromium dioxide (CrO2) thin film has generated considerable interest in applied research due to the wide variety of its technological applications. It has been extensively investigated in recent years, attracting the attention of researchers working on spintronic heterostructures and in the magnetic recording industry. However, its synthesis is usually a difficult task due to its metastable nature and various synthesis techniques are being investigated. In this work a polycrystalline thin film of CrO2 was prepared by electron beam vaporization of Cr2O3 onto a Si substrate. The polycrystalline structure was confirmed through XRD analysis. The stoichi- ometry and elemental depth distribution of the deposited film were measured by ion beam nuclear analytical techniques heavy ion elastic recoil detection analysis (ERDA) and Rutherford backscattering spectrometry (RBS), which both have relative advantage over non- nuclear spectrometries in that they can readily provide quantitative information about the concentration and distribution of different atomic species in a layer. Moreover, the analysis carried out highlights the importance of complementary usage of the two techniques to obtain a more complete description of elemental content and depth distribution in thin films