Judek J., Wróbel P., Michałowski P.P., Ożga M., Witkowski B., Seweryn A., Struzik M., Jastrzębski C. and Zberecki K.
Titanium nitride is a well-known conductive ceramic material that has recently experienced resumed attention because of its plasmonic properties comparable to metallic gold and silver. Thus, TiN is an attractive alternative for modern and future photonic applications that require compatibility with the Complementary Metal-Oxide-Semiconductor (CMOS) technology or improved resistance to temperatures or radiation. This work demonstrates that polycrystalline TiNx films sputtered on silicon at room temperature can exhibit plasmonic properties continuously from 400 nm up to 30 μm. The films’ composition, expressed as nitrogen to titanium ratio x and determined in the Secondary Ion Mass Spectroscopy (SIMS) experiment to be in the range of 0.84 to 1.21, is essential for optimizing the plasmonic properties. In the visible range, the dielectric function renders the interband optical transitions. For wavelengths longer than 800 nm, the optical properties of TiNx are well described by the Drude model modified by an additional Lorentz term, which has to be included for part of the samples. The ab initio calculations support the experimental results both in the visible and infra-red ranges; particularly, the existence of a very low energy optical transition is predicted. Some other minor features in the dielectric function observed for the longest wavelengths are suspected to be of phonon origin.
Materials, 2021, vol. 14(22), art. 7095, doi: 10.3390/ma14227095