We report a derivative spectroscopic method for determining insulator-to-semiconductor transition during sol-gel metal-oxide semiconductor formation. When an as-spun sol-gel precursor film is photochemically activated and changes to semiconducting state, the light absorption characteristics of the metal-oxide film is considerable changed particularly in the ultraviolet region. As a result, a peak is generated in the first-order derivatives of light absorption (A') vs. wavelength (λ) plots, and by tracing the peak center shift and peak intensity, transition from insulating-to-semiconducting state of the film can be monitored. The peak generation and peak center shift are described based on photon-energy-dependent absorption coefficient of metal-oxide films. We discuss detailed analysis method for metal-oxide semiconductor films and its application in thin-film transistor fabrication. We believe this derivative spectroscopy based determination can be beneficial for a non-destructive and a rapid monitoring of the insulator-to-semiconductor transition in sol-gel oxide semiconductor formation.
Keywords: derivative spectroscopy; insulator-to-semiconductor transition; sol-gel oxide.