The growth of columnar thin films and their characterization within the visible and near infrared spectral bands

Date of Award


Degree Name

M.S. in Electro-Optics


Department of Electro-Optics and Photonics


Advisor: Andrew Sarangan


Seven series of thin films encompassing metallic, dielectric, and semiconductor materials were deposited onto a substrate by means of electron-beam evaporation. Tilting the substrate at an oblique angle relative to the evaporant source causes an atomic shadowing effect to occur at adjacent deposition locations and results in the growth of a columnar morphology. Scanning electron micrographs for each series validate a film structure and porosity that varies with substrate tilt angle. Angle resolved spectroscopic ellipsometry reveals the anisotropic nature of the different series and determines the optical properties utilizing a best model fit calculation. In some instances, the optical properties of the columnar thin film and its bulk material differ significantly.


Thin films Optical properties, Thin films, Ellipsometry

Rights Statement

Copyright 2010, author