This work reports investigation on the deposition and evaluation of an aluminum-doped zinc oxide (AZO) thin film and its novel applications to micro- and nano-devices. The AZO thin film is deposited successfully by atomic layer deposition (ALD). 50 nm-thick AZO film with high uniformity is checked by scanning electron microscopy. The element composition of the deposited film with various aluminum dopant concentration is analyzed by energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy. In addition, a polycrystalline feature of the deposited film is confirmed by selected area electron diffraction and high-resolution transmission electron microscopy. The lowest sheet resistance of the deposited AZO film is found at 0.7 kΩ/□ with the aluminum dopant concentration at 5 at.%. A novel method employed the ALD in combination with the sacrificial silicon structures is proposed which opens the way to create the ultra-high aspect ratio AZO structures. Moreover, based on this finding, three kinds of micro- and nano-devices employing the deposited AZO thin film have been proposed and demonstrated. Firstly, nanowalled micro-hollows with an aspect ratio of 300 and a height of 15 µm are successfully produced. Secondly, micro- and nano-fluidics, including a hollow fluidic channel with a nanowall structure as a resonator and a fluidic capillary window as an optical modulator is proposed and demonstrated. Lastly, nanomechanical resonators consisting of a bridged nanobeam structure and a vertical nanomechanical capacitive resonator are fabricated and evaluated.
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