Open Access Nano Express

Doping of vanadium to nanocrystalline diamond films by hot filament chemical vapor deposition

Yaozhong Zhang, Liying Zhang, Jiang Zhao, Liang Wang, Gang Zhao and Yafei Zhang*

Author Affiliations

Key Laboratory for Thin Film and Microfabrication of the Ministry of Education, Institute of Micro/Nano Science and Technology, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai, 200030, People's Republic of China

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Nanoscale Research Letters 2012, 7:441  doi:10.1186/1556-276X-7-441

Published: 8 August 2012


Doping an impure element with a larger atomic volume into crystalline structure of buck crystals is normally blocked because the rigid crystalline structure could not tolerate a larger distortion. However, this difficulty may be weakened for nanocrystalline structures. Diamonds, as well as many semiconductors, have a difficulty in effective doping. Theoretical calculations carried out by DFT indicate that vanadium (V) is a dopant element for the n-type diamond semiconductor, and their several donor state levels are distributed between the conduction band and middle bandgap position in the V-doped band structure of diamond. Experimental investigation of doping vanadium into nanocrystalline diamond films (NDFs) was first attempted by hot filament chemical vapor deposition technique. Acetone/H2 gas mixtures and vanadium oxytripropoxide (VO(OCH2CH2CH3)3) solutions of acetone with V and C elemental ratios of 1:5,000, 1:2,000, and 1:1,000 were used as carbon and vanadium sources, respectively. The resistivity of the V-doped NDFs decreased two orders with the increasing V/C ratios.

Nanocrystalline diamond; Vanadium dopant; Donor state levels; Structural distortion toleration