M. Lourdes Calzada

Materials Science Institute of Madrid at the Spanish National Research Council
Towards the integration of ferroelectric oxide films in flexible electronics by low-temperature solution methods
The 1990’s trend toward the miniaturization of functional devices driven by the microelectronic industry led to the development of thin film materials integrated with semiconductor substrates (Si-technology), able to use their properties in micro and nanodevices with high integration densities and low operation voltages. However, since the beginning of this century, the electronic industry is demanding cost-efficient, soft-portable and high-tech devices. This has pushed the advance of Flexible Electronics, where the thin film is deposited on cheap flexible substrates (e.g., polymers, paper or textile). These substrates would also meet technological demands difficult to tackle by semiconductor substrates, such as their compatibility with roll-to-roll processing and printing technologies, thus making real applications not possible before. The degradation temperature of flexible substrates is always below 400°C. Therefore, Flexible Electronics is calling for low-temperature thin-film fabrication methods, in addition to materials that can be processed at these temperatures. Hence, organic and amorphous metal oxide semiconductors are the most widely used materials in Flexible Electronics. However, other active layers different from semiconductors are demanded because of the need of enlarging the performance of the forthcoming flexible devices. This is an opportunity for ferroelectric oxide thin films since their intrinsic multifunctionality (e.g., ferroelectric, pyroelectric, piezoelectric, multiferroic or photoferroic) would make possible multiple operations in the flexible device. But, in general, ferroelectric oxide films have to be crystalized at temperatures that exceed by far the thermal stability of the most favorable flexible substrate (i.e., Kapton polyimide). Transference methods can be used to avoid this problem. Here, the film is first processed at high temperatures on a rigid substrate, and then transferred to the flexible substrate. However, these techniques involve complex manufacturing methods and costly equipment. It should be also taken into account that the manufacturing of flexible electronic devices not only calls for low-temperature fabrication processes but also for deposition techniques that scale easily to the large areas required in flexible devices. In this regard, solution deposition methods are the best positioned today to integrate metal oxide thin films with flexible substrates, as a large-area, low-cost, high throughput fabrication technique. This conference presents a snapshot of the challenges for the integration of ferroelectric oxide films with flexible electronics, making emphasis in the development of novel solution synthesis strategies able to achieve the reduction of the processing temperature of the ferroelectric oxide and to permit the direct integration of large-area coatings of these active films with plastic substrates.
Presenter Bio

M. Lourdes Calzada is Full Professor at the Materials Science Institute of Madrid at the Spanish National Research Council (ICMM-CSIC), where she is currently the head of the Electroactive Oxides for Smart Devices research group.

Her R&D interests include synthesis by soft-chemistry routes and characterization of nanostructures, thin films and bulk materials of functional metal oxides for microelectronics and flexible electronics; design of homo- and hetero-metallic molecular precursors of high-tech oxides; engineering of high-performance oxide compositions; and sustainable processing methods for advanced materials and emerging technologies. Her current research projects are highly interdisciplinary and mostly focused on the development of low-temperature sol-gel synthesis strategies to attain metal oxide materials and the integration of functional thin films with semiconductor and flexible substrates (Si-technology and Flexible Electronics). She has pushed her group to a world-leadership position on this topic, being pioneer in the low-temperature solution processing of ferroelectric, multiferroic and photoferroic complex oxides for flexible electronic devices.

She has been involved in more than 30 R&D projects and has published more than 200 papers, 9 book chapters and is co-inventor in 3 patents. She has been Guess Editor in the Special Issue of Chemistry - A European Journal, 2020, dedicated to Low Temperature Solution Route Approaches to Oxide Functional Nanoscale Materials. She serves on the editorial board of the ACS Applied Electronic Materials and belongs to different steering committees of international conferences.

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