Electrodeposition is one of the economical methods for large surface coating and has been successfully used to prepare semiconductor films. The method allows the control of the bandgap width and the doping level through the control of variables such as solution composition, applied potential, pH and working temperature. Furthermore, monitoring the circulating charge it is also possible to control the thickness of the deposited layers. Metal chalcogenides have been generally electrodeposited by the cathodic co-reduction of the metal and chalcogenide ions. However, compositional heterogeneity is usually a problem with this approach. An attractive option involves the use of aprotic deposition baths such as dimethylsulfoxide which presents a high boiling point and also allows the solubility of the chalcogene precursor in nonionized, molecularly dissolved form. In this solvent it is possible to form binary compounds starting from the electrochemical reduction of the elementary chalcogen precursor and the consecutive formation of a chalcogenide anion that further precipitates heterogeneously onto the surface of a convenient substrate for the formation of II-VI semiconductors. In current work SnS thin films were prepared on molybdenum substrates by pulsed electrodeposition at differents synthesis times. The structure, morphology and composition were characterized by X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, energy dispersive X-ray analysis and Raman spectroscopy. The optical and electrical properties were studied by UV–vis absorption and capacitance-potential curves, respectively. The electrodeposited SnS films showed p-type semi-conductive characteristics and exhibited cathodic photocurrent under visible light illumination. Highly compact, dense, homogenous and almost stoichiometric films were obtained by properly selecting the electrodeposition parameters. These results show that the as grown films show composition and thickness compatible with the requirements of SnS based solar cell devices
Acknowledgements: To European Commission, NanoCIS project FP7-PEOPLE-2010-IRSES grant 269279 and to CONICYT (Chile), FONDECYT (Fondo de Desarrollo Cientifico y Tecnológico, Chile) through Project N° 3160217.
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