Submission Date


Document Type

Paper- Restricted to Campus Access


Physics & Astronomy

Faculty Mentor

Casey Schwarz


Presented during the 19th Annual Summer Fellows Symposium, July 21, 2017 at Ursinus College.

This research was funded by a Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) grant.

Project Description

Novel semiconducting materials, such as chalcogenide glass (ChG), have excellent infrared (IR) transparency and offer excellent potential for applications in detectors, sensors, waveguides, imaging devices, photonic waveguides, acousto-optics, and optical devices. Spin-coating ChGs from solution is a simple, low-cost, scalable method for depositing thick semiconductor films over a large area. This technique is an excellent alternative to thermal deposition of ChG films because it is less expensive and can be combined with soft lithography including micro-molding capillaries and micro-transfer molding for photonic device fabrication. To realize the full potential of spin-coated ChG films for device applications, their chemical, physical, and optical properties must be investigated in relation to their processing conditions and composition. In this work, bulk composition, ChG dissolution, solvent choice, and spin-coating were studied and correlated to resulting film morphology, thickness, transmission, and composition.

A solution, composed of powdered bulk As2S3 or As2Se3 dissolved in an amine (propylamine, ethanolamine, butylamine, or ethylenediamine), was placed onto a glass substrate, within the spin coater, and spun at different speeds and times to create films of varying thicknesses. Maximum glass loading without phase separation or precipitation in each solution was determined. Spin speeds, duration, and baking were optimized for creating homogenous films. UV-Vis and FTIR spectroscopy was used to measure transmission. The goal of this research is to generate fundamental knowledge of novel ChG materials and to develop processing conditions that enable device fabrication.