Estimation of compensation ratio by identifying the presence of different hopping conduction mechanisms in SnO2 thin films
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The electrical properties of undoped SnO2 thin films prepared by the sol-gel technique were investigated by conductivity measurements in a temperature range of 50-200 K. Structural characterizations of the films were performed by atomic force microscopy and X-ray diffraction. Optical properties of the samples were also characterized by optical absorption spectroscopy. The different hopping models were used to investigate the characteristics of electrical conduction by hopping in employed temperature range. It was shown that three types of behavior can be expected, nearest-neighbour hopping at high temperatures, the Mott variable-range hopping at low temperatures and Efros-Shklovskii variable-range hopping at lower temperatures. The criteria for the observation of these three regions were established and the transitional behavior of the conductivity was determined. The experimentally determined critical transition temperatures were at the orders of magnitudes with what could be expected based on hopping conduction calculations. Under these analyses, the compensation ratio of the films was determined. (C) 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.