Staff directory Amador Pérez Tomás

Amador Pérez Tomás

SO Senior Postdoctoral Researcher
Oxide Nanophysics



  • PbZrTiO3 ferroelectric oxide as an electron extraction material for stable halide perovskite solar cells

    Pérez-Tomas A., Xie H., Wang Z., Kim H.-S., Shirley I., Turren-Cruz S.-H., Morales-Melgares A., Saliba B., Tanenbaum D., Saliba M., Zakeeruddin S.M., Gratzel M., Hagfeldt A., Lira-Cantu M. Sustainable Energy and Fuels; 3 (2): 382 - 389. 2019. 10.1039/c8se00451j.

    State-of-the-art halide perovskite solar cells employ semiconductor oxides as electron transport materials. Defects in these oxides, such as oxygen vacancies (Ovac), act as recombination centres and, in air and UV light, reduce the stability of the solar cell. Under the same conditions, the PbZrTiO3 ferroelectric oxide employs Ovac for the creation of defect-dipoles responsible for photo-carrier separation and current transport, evading device degradation. We report the application of PbZrTiO3 as the electron extraction material in triple cation halide perovskite solar cells. The application of a bias voltage (poling) up to 2 V, under UV light, is a critical step to induce charge transport in the ferroelectric oxide. Champion cells result in power conversion efficiencies of ∼11% after poling. Stability analysis, carried out at 1-sun AM 1.5 G, including UV light in air for unencapsulated devices, shows negligible degradation for hours. Our experiments indicate the effect of ferroelectricity, however alternative conducting mechanisms affected by the accumulation of charges or the migration of ions (or the combination of them) cannot be ruled out. Our results demonstrate, for the first time, the application of a ferroelectric oxide as an electron extraction material in efficient and stable PSCs. These findings are also a step forward in the development of next generation ferroelectric oxide-based electronic and optoelectronic devices. © 2019 The Royal Society of Chemistry.


  • A Solar Transistor and Photoferroelectric Memory

    Pérez-Tomás A., Lima A., Billon Q., Shirley I., Catalan G., Lira-Cantú M. Advanced Functional Materials; 28 (17, 1707099) 2018. 10.1002/adfm.201707099. IF: 13.325

    This study presents a new self-powered electronic transistor concept “the solar transistor.” The transistor effect is enabled by the functional integration of a ferroelectric-oxide thin film and an organic bulk heterojunction. The organic heterojunction efficiently harvests photon energy and splits photogenerated excitons into free electron and holes, and the ferroelectric film acts as a switchable electron transport layer with tuneable conduction band offsets that depend on its polarization state. This results in the device photoconductivity modulation. All this (i.e., carrier extraction and poling) is achieved with only two sandwiched electrodes and therefore, with the role of the gating electrode being taken by light. The two-terminal solar-powered phototransistor (or solaristor) thus has the added advantages of a compact photodiode architecture in addition to the nonvolatile functionality of a ferroelectric memory that is written by voltage and nondestructively read by light. © 2018 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim

  • Wide and ultra-wide bandgap oxides: Where paradigm-shift photovoltaics meets transparent power electronics

    Pérez-Tomás A., Chikoidze E., Jennings M.R., Russell S.A.O., Teherani F.H., Bove P., Sandana E.V., Rogers D.J. Proceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering; 10533 ( 105331Q) 2018. 10.1117/12.2302576. IF: 0.000

    Oxides represent the largest family of wide bandgap (WBG) semiconductors and also offer a huge potential range of complementary magnetic and electronic properties, such as ferromagnetism, ferroelectricity, antiferroelectricity and high-temperature superconductivity. Here, we review our integration of WBG and ultra WBG semiconductor oxides into different solar cells architectures where they have the role of transparent conductive electrodes and/or barriers bringing unique functionalities into the structure such above bandgap voltages or switchable interfaces. We also give an overview of the state-of-the-art and perspectives for the emerging semiconductor β- Ga2O3, which is widely forecast to herald the next generation of power electronic converters because of the combination of an UWBG with the capacity to conduct electricity. This opens unprecedented possibilities for the monolithic integration in solar cells of both self-powered logic and power electronics functionalities. Therefore, WBG and UWBG oxides have enormous promise to become key enabling technologies for the zero emissions smart integration of the internet of things. © Copyright 2018 SPIE.


  • Cryogenic characterisation and modelling of commercial SiC MOSFETs

    Woodend L.J., Gammon P.M., Shah V.A., Pérez-Tomás A., Li F., Hamilton D.P., Myronov M., Mawby P.A. Materials Science Forum; 897 MSF: 557 - 560. 2017. 10.4028/ IF: 0.399

    Two commercial 1.2 kV SiC MOSFETs have been extensively characterised from 30 to 320 K. The temperature dependence of their I/V characteristics, threshold voltage, and breakdown voltage has been examined and are presented in this paper. Overall, the measured characteristics of both devices demonstrate very similar temperature dependencies and it is shown that below ~100 K any further decrease in temperature has little effect on any of the tested characteristics. Increasing temperature beyond 100 K results in a decrease in drain current for a given drain-source and gatesource voltage, a decrease in threshold voltage, and an increase in breakdown voltage. Successful attempts have been made to model the results of these tests by applying theories found in the literature. © 2017 Trans Tech Publications, Switzerland.

  • Functional oxide as an extreme high-k dielectric towards 4H-SiC MOSFET incorporation

    Russell S.A.O., Jennings M.R., Dai T., Li F., Hamilton D.P., Fisher C.A., Sharma Y.K., Mawby P.A., Pérez-Tomás A. Materials Science Forum; 897 MSF: 155 - 158. 2017. 10.4028/ IF: 0.399

    MOS Capacitors are demonstrated on 4H-SiC using an octahedral ABO3 ferroic thin-film as a dielectric prepared on several buffer layers. Five samples were prepared: ABO3 on SiC, ABO3 on SiC with a SiO2 buffer (10 nm and 40 nm) and ABO3 on SiC with an Al2O3 buffer (10nm and 40 nm). Depending on the buffer material the oxide forms in either the pyrochlore or perovskite phase. A better lattice match with the Al2O3 buffer yields a perovskite phase with internal switchable dipoles. Hysteresis polarization-voltage loops show an oxide capacitance of ~ 0.2 μF/cm2 in the accumulation region indicating a dielectric constant of ~120. © 2017 Trans Tech Publications, Switzerland.

  • Heteroepitaxial Beta-Ga2O3 on 4H-SiC for an FET with Reduced Self Heating

    Russell S.A.O., Perez-Tomas A., McConville C.F., Fisher C.A., Hamilton D.P., Mawby P.A., Jennings M.R. IEEE Journal of the Electron Devices Society; 5 (4, 7932063): 256 - 261. 2017. 10.1109/JEDS.2017.2706321. IF: 3.141

    A method to improve thermal management of ${\beta }$ -Ga2O3 FETs is demonstrated here via simulation of epitaxial growth on a 4H-SiC substrate. Using a recently published device as a model, the reduction achieved in self-heating allows the device to be driven at higher gate voltages and increases the overall performance. For the same operating parameters an 18% increase in peak drain current and 15% reduction in lattice temperature are observed. Device dimensions may be substantially reduced without detriment to performance and normally off operation may be achieved. © 2013 IEEE.

  • High-Temperature Electrical and Thermal Aging Performance and Application Considerations for SiC Power DMOSFETs

    Hamilton D.P., Jennings M.R., Perez-Tomas A., Russell S.A.O., Hindmarsh S.A., Fisher C.A., Mawby P.A. IEEE Transactions on Power Electronics; 32 (10, 7776925): 7967 - 7979. 2017. 10.1109/TPEL.2016.2636743. IF: 7.151

    The temperature dependence and stability of three different commercially-available unpackaged SiC Dmosfets have been measured. On-state resistances increased to 6 or 7 times their room temperature values at 350 °C. Threshold voltages almost doubled after tens of minutes of positive gate voltage stressing at 300 °C, but approached their original values again after only one or two minutes of negative gate bias stressing. Fortunately, the change in drain current due to these threshold instabilities was almost negligible. However, the threshold approaches zero volts at high temperatures after a high temperature negative gate bias stress. The zero gate bias leakage is low until the threshold voltage reduces to approximately 150 mV, where-after the leakage increases exponentially. Thermal aging tests demonstrated a sudden change from linear to nonlinear output characteristics after 24-100 h air storage at 300 °C and after 570-1000 h in N2 atmosphere. We attribute this to nickel oxide growth on the drain contact metallization which forms a heterojunction p-n diode with the SiC substrate. It was determined that these state-of-the-art SiC mosfet devices may be operated in real applications at temperatures far exceeding their rated operating temperatures. © 1986-2012 IEEE.

  • Physical characterisation of 3C-SiC(001)/SiO2 interface using XPS

    Li F., Vavasour O., Walker M., Martin D.M., Sharma Y., Russell S., Jennings M., Pérez-Tomás A., Mawby P.A. Materials Science Forum; 897 MSF: 151 - 154. 2017. 10.4028/ IF: 0.399

    Normally-on MOSFETs were fabricated on 3C-SiC epilayers (Si face) using high temperature (1300 °C) wet oxidation. XPS analysis found little carbon at the MOS interface yet the channel mobility (60 cm2/V.s) is considerably low. Si suboxides (SiOx, x<2) exist at the wet oxidised 3C-SiC/SiO2 interface, which may act as interface traps and degrade the conduction performance. © 2017 Trans Tech Publications, Switzerland.


  • 3C-SiC Transistor with Ohmic Contacts Defined at Room Temperature

    Li F., Sharma Y., Walker D., Hindmarsh S., Jennings M., Martin D., Fisher C., Gammon P., Pérez-Tomás A., Mawby P. IEEE Electron Device Letters; 37 (9, 7518645): 1189 - 1192. 2016. 10.1109/LED.2016.2593771. IF: 2.528

    Among all SiC polytypes, only 3C-SiC has a cubic structure and can be hetero-epitaxial grown on large area Si substrate, thus providing an alternative choice for fabricating cheap wide bandgap power devices. Here, we present a low resistivity (~3 × 10-5Ω cm2) ohmic contact formed by directly depositing a Ti/Ni metal stack on n-type 3C-SiC without any extra annealing. For the first time, 3C-SiC lateral MOSFETs with asdeposited ohmic contacts were fabricated, and it turned out not only the ohmic contact is free from any interface voids, but also a higher field-effect mobility value (~80 cm2/V · s) was achieved compared with the annealed devices. © 1980-2012 IEEE.

  • Above-Bandgap Photovoltages in Antiferroelectrics

    Pérez-Tomás A., Lira-Cantú M., Catalan G. Advanced Materials; 28 (43): 9644 - 9647. 2016. 10.1002/adma.201603176. IF: 18.960

    The closed circuit photocurrent and open circuit photovoltage of antiferroelectric thin films were characterized both in their ground (antipolar) state and in their polarized state. A sharp transition happens from near zero to large photovoltages as the polarization is switched on, consistent with the activation of the bulk photovoltaic effect. The AFE layers have been grown by a solution processing method (sol?gel synthesis followed by spin coating deposition) onto fluorine-doped tin oxide (FTO), a transparent conducting oxide with low sheet resistance and a higher resilience to high-temperature processing than indium tin oxide and a standard for solar cells such as organometal trihalide perovskites. Light absorption confirmed that the PZO films are, as expected, wide-band gap semiconductors with a gap of 3.7.8 eV and thus highly absorbing in the near-ultraviolet range. On a virgin sample, there is no shortcircuit photocurrent, consistent with the antipolar nature of the ground state. As an external bias voltage is applied, the current remains negligible until suddenly, at the coercive voltage, a spike is observed, corresponding to the transient displacement current caused by the onset of polarization.

  • Improved channel mobility by oxide nitridation for n-channel MOSFET on 3C-SiC(100)/Si

    Li F., Sharma Y.K., Jennings M.R., Pérez-Tomás A., Shah V.A., Rong H., Russell S.A.O., Martin D.M., Mawby P.A. Materials Science Forum; 858: 667 - 670. 2016. 10.4028/ IF: 0.000

    In this work we studied the gate oxidation temperature and nitridation influences on the resultant 3C-SiC MOSFET forward characteristics. Conventional long channel lateral MOSFETs were fabricated on 3C-SiC(100) epilayers grown on Si substrates using five different oxidation processes. Both room temperature and high temperature (up to 500K) forward IV performance were characterised, and channel mobility as high as 90cm2/V.s was obtained for devices with nitrided gate oxide, considerable higher than the ones without nitridation process (~70 cm2/V.s). © 2016 Trans Tech Publications, Switzerland.

  • Performance and stability of mixed FAPbI3(0.85)MAPbBr3(0.15) halide perovskite solar cells under outdoor conditions and the effect of low light irradiation

    Reyna Y., Salado M., Kazim S., Pérez-Tomas A., Ahmad S., Lira-Cantu M. Nano Energy; 30: 570 - 579. 2016. 10.1016/j.nanoen.2016.10.053. IF: 11.553

    We demonstrate for the first time, the real lifetime response of mixed halide perovskite solar cells (PSCs) for >1000 h under outdoor conditions and the exceptional photoresponse observed at low-light intensities attributed to the ionic-electronic nature of the material. The investigated devices were fabricated by utilizing mixed perovskites containing formamidinium (FA) and methylammonium (MA) cations, in a one step solution-process method through a solvent engineering approach. The devices’ architecture is FTO/TiO2 (blocking layer) TiO2 (mesoporous)/FAPbI3(0.85)MAPbBr3(0.15)/Spiro-OMeTAD/Au. Notably, low short circuit current (Jsc) was observed at low light intensities (<50 W/m2) together with high open circuit potential build-up, which resulted in high PCEs. This response is in agreement with a “double electronic-ionic transport” model of the halide perovskite where the ionic component dominates at low light intensities and the electronic component dictates at high light irradiances. Our results highlight the exceptional stability of mixed MA/FA mesoscopic PSCs when operated for >1000 h under real outdoor conditions and the strong ionic component observed at low light irradiation. © 2016 Elsevier Ltd


  • Electrical activation of nitrogen heavily implanted 3C-SiC(1 0 0)

    Li F., Sharma Y., Shah V., Jennings M., Pérez-Tomás A., Myronov M., Fisher C., Leadley D., Mawby P. Applied Surface Science; 353: 958 - 963. 2015. 10.1016/j.apsusc.2015.06.169. IF: 2.711

    A degenerated wide bandgap semiconductor is a rare system. In general, implant levels lie deeper in the band-gap and carrier freeze-out usually takes place at room temperature. Nevertheless, we have observed that heavily doped n-type degenerated 3C-SiC films are achieved by nitrogen implantation level of ∼6 × 1020 cm-3 at 20 K. According to temperature dependent Hall measurements, nitrogen activation rates decrease with the doping level from almost 100% (1.5 × 1019 cm-3, donor level 15 meV) to ∼12% for 6 × 1020 cm-3. Free donors are found to saturate in 3C-SiC at ∼7 × 1019 cm-3. The implanted film electrical performances are characterized as a function of the dopant doses and post implantation annealing (PIA) conditions by fabricating Van der Pauw structures. A deposited SiO2 layer was used as the surface capping layer during the PIA process to study its effect on the resultant film properties. From the device design point of view, the lowest sheet resistivity (∼1.4 mΩ cm) has been observed for medium doped (4 × 1019 cm-3) sample with PIA 1375 °C 2 h without a SiO2 cap. Crown Copyright © 2015 Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  • High-Temperature (1200–1400°C) Dry Oxidation of 3C-SiC on Silicon

    Sharma Y.K., Li F., Jennings M.R., Fisher C.A., Pérez-Tomás A., Thomas S., Hamilton D.P., Russell S.A.O., Mawby P.A. Journal of Electronic Materials; 44 (11): 4167 - 4174. 2015. 10.1007/s11664-015-3949-4. IF: 1.798

    In a novel approach, high temperatures (1200–1400°C) were used to oxidize cubic silicon carbide (3C-SiC) grown on silicon substrate. High-temperature oxidation does not significantly affect 3C-SiC doping concentration, 3C-SiC structural composition, or the final morphology of the SiO2 layer, which remains unaffected even at 1400°C (the melting point of silicon is 1414°C). Metal-oxide-semiconductor capacitors (MOS-C) and lateral channel metal-oxide-semiconductor field-effect-transistors (MOSFET) were fabricated by use of the high-temperature oxidation process to study 3C-SiC/SiO2 interfaces. Unlike 4H-SiC MOSFET, there is no extra benefit of increasing the oxidation temperature from 1200°C to 1400°C. All the MOSFET resulted in a maximum field-effect mobility of approximately 70 cm2/V s. © 2015, The Minerals, Metals & Materials Society.

  • Nanoscale conductive pattern of the homoepitaxial AlGaN/GaN transistor

    Pérez-Tomás A., Catalàn G., Fontserè A., Iglesias V., Chen H., Gammon P.M., Jennings M.R., Thomas M., Fisher C.A., Sharma Y.K., Placidi M., Chmielowska M., Chenot S., Porti M., Nafría M., Cordier Y. Nanotechnology; 26 (11, 115203) 2015. 10.1088/0957-4484/26/11/115203. IF: 3.821

    The gallium nitride (GaN)-based buffer/barrier mode of growth and morphology, the transistor electrical response (25-310 C) and the nanoscale pattern of a homoepitaxial AlGaN/GaN high electron mobility transistor (HEMT) have been investigated at the micro and nanoscale. The low channel sheet resistance and the enhanced heat dissipation allow a highly conductive HEMT transistor (Ids>1 A mm-1) to be defined (0.5 A mm-1 at 300 C). The vertical breakdown voltage has been determined to be ∼850 V with the vertical drain-bulk (or gate-bulk) current following the hopping mechanism, with an activation energy of 350 meV. The conductive atomic force microscopy nanoscale current pattern does not unequivocally follow the molecular beam epitaxy AlGaN/GaN morphology but it suggests that the FS-GaN substrate presents a series of preferential conductive spots (conductive patches). Both the estimated patches density and the apparent random distribution appear to correlate with the edge-pit dislocations observed via cathodoluminescence. The sub-surface edge-pit dislocations originating in the FS-GaN substrate result in barrier height inhomogeneity within the HEMT Schottky gate producing a subthreshold current. © 2015 IOP Publishing Ltd.


  • Improved performance of 4H-SiC PiN diodes using a novel combined high temperature oxidation and annealing process

    Fisher, C.A.; Jennings, M.R.; Sharma, Y.K.; Hamilton, D.P.; Gammon, P.M.; Pérez-Tomás, A.; Thomas, S.M.; Burrows, S.E.; Mawby, P.A. IEEE Transactions on Semiconductor Manufacturing; 27 (3): 443 - 451. 2014. 10.1109/TSM.2014.2336701. IF: 0.977

  • On the Schottky barrier height lowering effect of Ti3SiC2 in ohmic contacts to p-type 4H-SiC

    C. A. Fisher; M. R. Jennings; Y. K. Sharma; A. Sanchez; D. Walker; P. M. Gammon; A. Pérez-Tomás; S. M. Thomas; S. E. Burrows; P. A. Mawby International Journal of Fundamental Physical Sciences (IJFPS); 4 (3): 95 - 100. 2014. 10.14331/ijfps.2014.330071. IF: 0.000