Nanocrystalline zinc sulfide thin films were prepared on glass substrates by chemical bath deposition method using aqueous solutions of zinc chloride, thiourea ammonium hydroxide along with non-toxic complexing agent trisodium citrate in alkaline medium at 80 °C. The effect of deposition time and annealing on the properties of ZnS thin films was investigated by X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, optical transmittance spectroscopy and four-point probe method. The X-ray diffraction analysis showed that the samples exhibited cubic sphalerite structure with preferential orientation along 〈2 0 0〉 direction. Scanning electron microscopy micrographs revealed uniform surface coverage, UV-Vis (300 nm to 800 nm) spectrophotometric measurements showed transparency of the films (transmittance ranging from 69 % to 81 %), with a direct allowed energy band gap in the range of 3.87 eV to 4.03 eV. After thermal annealing at 500 °C for 120 min, the transmittance increased up to 87 %. Moreover, the electrical conductivity of the deposited films increased with increasing of the deposition time from 0.35 × 10−4 Ω·cm−1 to 2.7 × 10−4 Ω·cm−1.
The present research is focused on developing ZnAl2O4 (gahnite) spinel as an antireflection coating material for enhanced energy conversion of polycrystalline silicon solar cells (PSSC). ZnAl2O4 has been synthesized using dual precursors, namely aluminum nitrate nonahydrate and zinc nitrate hexahydrate in ethanol media. Diethanolamine has been used as a sol stabilizer in sol-gel process for ZnAl2O4 nanosheet fabrication. ZnAl2O4 nanosheet was deposited layer-by-layer (LBL) on PSSC by spin coating method. The effect of ZnAl2O4 coating on the physical, electrical, optical properties and temperature distribution in PSSC was investigated. The synthesized antireflection coating (ARC) material bears gahnite (ZnAl2O4) spinel crystal structure composed of two dimensional (2D) nanosheets. An increase in layer thickness proves the LBL deposition of ARC on the PSSC substrate. The ZnAl2O4 2D nanosheet comprising ARC on the PSSC was tested and it exhibited a maximum of 93 % transmittance, short-circuit photocurrent of 42.364 mA/cm2 and maximum power conversion efficiency (PCE) 23.42 % at a low cell temperature (50.2 °C) for three-layer ARC, while the reference cell exhibited 33.518 mA/cm2, 15.74 % and 59.1 °C, respectively. Based on the results, ZnAl2O4 2D nanosheets have been proven as an appropriate ARC material for increasing the PCE of PSSC.
Sachin Kumar, Naven Kumar, Kamna Yadav, Annveer and R.P. Singh
DFT analyses of electronic and optical spectra of barium cadmium chalcogenides (Ba2CdX3, X = S, Se, Te) have been carried out. The study of electronic spectra has been made in terms of band structure and density of states using full potential linear augmented plane wave plus local orbital method. Band structure calculations have been carried out under the approximations PBE-GGA, PBE-Sol, LDA and TB-mBJ. Band structures of these materials show that Ba2CdS3, Ba2CdSe3 and Ba2CdTe3 crystals possess a band gap less than 1 eV, underestimated relative to the experimental/theoretical literature values. Optical spectra of these chalcogenides have been analyzed in terms of real and imaginary parts of dielectric function, reflectivity, refractive index, extinction coefficient, absorption coefficient, optical conductivity and electron energy loss. Optical results show large anisotropy along different directions. These results provide a physical basis of barium cadmium chalcogenides for potential application in optoelectronic devices.
A. Irekti, M. Oualit, H. Siahmed, D. Buncianu and F. Zibouche
Lignin is the second most abundant natural polymer. Due to the high content of carbon and hydrogen (C-H, C-C, C=O), it can be used as a potential dispersant for cement matrix. The objective of this study is to extract lignin from date palm and study its effect in the form of black liquor (BL) on the rheological and physic-mechanical properties of the cements and concrete. The lignin in black liquor form represents approximately 30 wt% dry weight of date palm. It is a heteropolymer composed primarily of methoxylated phenylpropylene alcohol monomeric units interconnected by a variety of stable carbon-carbon and carbon-oxygen-carbon (ether and esters) linkages. The results found show the positive effect on the workability of cement and concrete and confirms its dispersion effect by improving compressive strength of concrete during the early and the later ages of hydration.
Setia Budi, Sukro Muhab, Agung Purwanto, Budhy Kurniawan and Azwar Manaf
The effect of electrodeposition potential on the magnetic properties of the FeCoNi films has been reported in this paper. The FeCoNi electrodeposition was carried out from sulfate solution using potentiostatic technique. The obtained FeCoNi films were characterized by X-ray diffractometer (XRD), atomic absorption spectrometer (AAS) and vibrating sample magnetometer (VSM). It has been shown that the electrodeposition potential applied during the synthesis process determines the magnetic characteristics of FeCoNi films. The more negative potential is applied, the higher Ni content is in the FeCoNi alloy. At the same time, Co and Fe showed almost similar trend in which the content decreased with an increase in applied potential. The mean crystallite size of FeCoNi films was ranging from 11 nm to 15 nm. VSM evaluation indicated that the FeCoNi film is a ferromagnetic alloy with magnetic anisotropy. The high saturation magnetization of FeCoNi film was ranging from 86 A·m2/kg to 105 A·m2/kg. The film is a soft magnetic material which was revealed by a very low coercivity value in the range of 1.3 kA/m to 3.7 kA/m. Both the saturation magnetization and coercivity values decreased at a more negative electrodeposition potential.
Fucheng Yu, Hailong Hu, Bolong Wang, Haishan Li, Tianyun Song, Boyu Xu, Ling He, Shu Wang and Hongyan Duan
Al doped ZnO (AZO) thin films were prepared on silica substrates by sol-gel method. The films showed a hexagonal wurtzite structure with a preferred orientation along c-axis. Suitable Al doping dramatically improved the crystal quality compared to the undoped ZnO films. Dependent on the Al dopant concentration, the diffraction peak of (0 0 2) plane in XRD spectra showed at first right-shifting and then left-shifting, which was attributed to the change in defect concentration induced by the Al dopant. Photocatalytic properties of the AZO film were characterized by degradation of methyl orange (MO) under simulated solar light. The transmittance of the films was enhanced by the Al doping, and the maximum transmittance of 80 % in the visible region was observed in the sample with Al concentration of 1.5 at.% (mole fraction). The film with 1.5 at.% Al doping achieved also maximum photocatalytic activity of 68.6 % under solar light. The changes in the film parameters can be attributed to the variation in defect concentration induced by different Al doping content.
Tahmineh Jalali, Abdolrasoul Gharaati and Mohammad Rastegar
In this paper, employing of one-dimensional magnetophotonic crystals in infrared wavelengths range is considered. For this purpose, magnetophotonic multilayer structures, composed of magnetic defect layer surrounded by dielectric and MO Bragg mirrors, have been proposed. Ce:YIG with an optical thickness in the range of 0 to λs was used as a magnetic material. By using four by four transfer matrix method, the transmittance values and Faraday rotation (FR) angles of these structures were computed. The electric field distribution was obtained by Finite Element Method (FEM). By investigation of transmittance and FR angle of magnetophotonic crystals, it was possible to design the optimized structures with a rotation larger than 30 degrees and high transmittance. Such structures with a few micrometer thickness and fast magneto-optical (MO) responses have the potential to be used in MO devices like integrated photonic elements and sensors.
Nanostructures of copper (II) oxide were synthesized through chemical reduction of copper (II) sulfate pentahydrate using phytochemicals present in leaf extracts of Leucas aspera. The crystalline phases and size were assessed by X-ray diffraction data analysis. From the Bragg reflection peaks, existence of monoclinic end-centered phase of copper (II) oxide along with presence of cubic primitive phase of copper (I) oxide and traces of cubic face centered lattices of zero valent copper was revealed. The three Raman active modes corresponding to CuO phase were identified in the sample with permissible merging of characteristic bands due to nanostructuring and organic capping. The surface topography measurement using field emission scanning electron microscope evidenced the occurrence of cylindrical rod shaped morphological structures along with a number of unshaped aggregates in the sample. The effective crystallite size and lattice strain were estimated from Williamson-Hall analysis of Bragg reflection data. Tauc plot analysis of UV-Vis-NIR absorption data in direct transition mode provided an estimation of band gap, viz. 1.83 eV and 2.06 eV respectively, for copper (II) oxide and copper (I) oxide. Thermal degradation study using thermogravimetric curve analysis could reveal the amount of moisture content, volatile components as well as the polymer capping over nanorods present in the sample. It could be seen that upon heating, inorganic core crystals undergo oxidation process and at temperature above 464 °C, the sample was found to be composed solely of inorganic crystallite phase of copper (II) oxide.
Potassium iodide (KI) doped potassium hydrogen phthalate (KHP) single crystals were grown by slow evaporation technique using millipore water as a solvent. The grown single crystals were analyzed by powder X-ray diffraction and the analysis confirmed that KI-doped KHP crystallizes in orthorhombic system with space group Pca21. The functional groups were identified by FT-IR technique which showed slight shift in vibrational frequencies, indicating inclusion of dopant into the crystal lattice. The UV-Vis spectral studies revealed the optical transparency of the doped crystals in the entire visible region. The optical band gap values were estimated from Tauc plots. Kurtz-Perry powder test was employed for second harmonic generation efficiency studies of the grown crystals.
An organic single crystal of 4-chloroanilinium hydrogen (2R,3R)-tartrate monohydrate (4CAHT) was grown by slow evaporation solution growth technique at room temperature. Single crystal XRD study confirmed that the crystal belongs to monoclinic system with the space group P21. Powder XRD analysis confirmed the crystalline nature of the compound. The presence of various functional groups in the compound was revealed by FT-IR analysis. UV studies showed the absence of absorption in the entire visible region. To determine the thermal stability of the grown crystals it was subjected to thermogravimetric and differential thermal analyses. Microhardness and etching studies were also carried out for the crystal. The powder second harmonic generation efficiency of 4CAHT was tested by Kurtz and Perry powder technique and the relative SHG efficiency of 4CAHT was found to be 1.44 times greater than that of standard KDP.