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Effects of Multilayer Structure on the Microstructure and Optical Properties of the DC Sputtered Chromium Thin Films for Selective Solar Absorber Applications

Justine J. Tibaijuka
Margaret E. Samiji
Mmantsae Diale
Nuru R. Mlyuka


Chromium thin films exhibit several properties that make them potential for solar thermal applications. In this work the effect of film thickness and sputtering power based multilayer structure on the optical properties of DC sputtered chromium thin films is reported. The structural, topological, and optical properties of these films were determined by X-ray diffractometer, Atomic Force Microscopy, and Ultraviolet-Visible-Near Infrared spectrophotometer, respectively. XRD spectra revealed a single peak with preferential orientation of (200) and (210) for single layer and multilayer chromium films, respectively. The grain size and roughness were relatively higher for the multilayer compared to single layer Chromium films. Spectral transmittance showed very high sensitivity to film thickness with average peak of 69% and 5% at a wavelength range of 250-2500 nm for the film thickness of 12 nm and 94 nm, respectively. Spectral transmittance was also found to be higher in single layered films than multi-layered films. Findings from this study suggest that multilayer structure have the potential of tuning the microstructure and optical properties of low thickness Cr films, hence, extending its potential applications in selective solar absorber applications.

Keywords: Multilayer, Chromium, Sputtering, Optical constants


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eISSN: 2507-7961
print ISSN: 0856-1761