Direct Chemical Vapor Deposition Synthesis of Phase-Pure Iron Pyrite (FeS2) Thin Films

TitleDirect Chemical Vapor Deposition Synthesis of Phase-Pure Iron Pyrite (FeS2) Thin Films
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2015
AuthorsSamad, L, Caban-Acevedo, M, Shearer, MJ, Park, K, Hamers, RJ, Jin, S
JournalChemistry of Materials
Start Page3108
Date Published04/2015
ISBN Number0897-4756
Keywordsatmospheric-pressure, growth, mocvd, n-fes2 pyrite, nanocrystals, photovoltaic application, precursors, semiconductor, sulfurization, surface

Resurgent interest in iron pyrite (FeS2) as an earth-abundant, nontoxic semiconductor for solar applications has resulted in many attempts to grow phase-pure thin films via chemical vapor deposition (CVD). However, all thin films grown via CVD or sulfidation to date have contained marcasite phase or other iron sulfide impurities. Here, we report the use of metallic cobalt pyrite (cattierite; CoS2) thin films as an ideal substrate leading to the first direct growth of phase-pufe iron pyrite thin films via,atmospheric pressure CVD., This synthesis was :achieved by reacting FeCl3 and ditert butyl disulfide (TBDS) at 400-450 degrees C. The products, were confirmed as phase-pure iron pyrite using X-ray diffraction (XRD), Raman, spectroscopy, and energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS). In addition to phase-purity, the synthesis produced crystal domains >1 pm and a conformal coating 3-5 pm thick, which are attributed to the <2% lattice mismatch of the isostruetural cattierite substrate. The surface was characterized by ultraviolet and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (UPS & XPS) and the electrical properties by electrocheinical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) and Mott-Schottky analysis.. The direct growth of a phase-pure iron pyrite film on a conductive substrate provides the most convenient configuration so far for potential solar cells.

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