Optical and sensor properties of ZnO nanostructure grown by thermal oxidation in dry or wet nitrogen

C. H. Xu, H. F. Lui, C. Surya

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

9 Citations (Scopus)


Zn films on glass were oxidized at 390°C in dry or wet N 2. As-prepared ZnO oxides were characterized by a scanning electron microscope (SEM), an X-ray diffractometer (XRD), a transmission electron microscope (TEN) and photoluminescence (PL) measurements. Gold electrodes were deposited on ZnO films to obtain ZnO gas sensors, which were characterized by exposure to ethanol at room temperature. The results show that the specimen oxidized in dry N 2 exhibits a sharp PL peak at 380 nm whereas that oxidized in wet N 2 exhibits a broad peak at 490 nm. The sensors demonstrate significant sensitivity to ethanol vapor at room temperature with a detection limit of 200 ppm for the sensor with ZnO oxidized in wet N 2. Recovery for the sensor with ZnO oxidized in wet N 2 can be achieved by illumination with natural light. However, for the sensor with ZnO oxidized in dry N 2, ultraviolet (UV) radiation is needed for recovery.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)27-33
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Electroceramics
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 1 2012
Externally publishedYes



  • Ethanol
  • Gas sensor
  • Oxidation
  • Photoluminescence
  • Recovery
  • ZnO nanowire

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ceramics and Composites
  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Materials Chemistry
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Mechanics of Materials

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