Optimizing the Electronic Structure of In2O3 through Mg Doping for NiO/In2O3 p–n Heterojunction Diodes
journal contributionposted on 2020-11-16, 07:13 authored by Yuheng Gong, Zhenni Yang, Leonardo Lari, Irene Azaceta, Vlado K. Lazarov, Jiaye Zhang, Xiangyu Xu, Qijin Cheng, Kelvin H. L. Zhang
In2O3 is a wide bandgap oxide semiconductor, which has the potential to be used as an active material for transparent flexible electronics and UV photodetectors. However, the high concentration of unintentional background electrons existing in In2O3 makes it hard to be modulated by the electric field or form p–n heterojunctions with a sufficient band-bending width at the interface. In this work, we report the reduction of the background electrons in In2O3 by Mg doping (Mg–In2O3) and thereby improve the device performance of p–n diodes based on the NiO/Mg–In2O3 heterojunction. In particular, Mg doping compensates the free electrons in In2O3 and reduces the electron concentration from 1.7 × 1019 cm–3 without doping to 1.8 × 1017 cm–3 with 5% Mg doping. Transparent p–n heterojunction diodes were fabricated based on p-type NiO and n-type Mg–In2O3. The device performance was considerably enhanced by Mg doping with a high rectification ratio of 3 × 104 and a remarkable high breakdown voltage of >20 V. High-resolution X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy was used to investigate the interfacial electronic structure between NiO and Mg–In2O3, revealing a type II band alignment with a valence band offset of 1.35 eV and a conduction band offset of 2.15 eV. A large built-in potential of 0.98 eV was found for the undoped In2O3 but decreased to 0.51 eV for 5% Mg doping of In2O3. The NiO/Mg–In2O3 diodes with an improved rectification ratio and wider depletion region provide the possibility of achieving photodetectors with rapid photoresponse.