Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Granting Department

Electrical Engineering

Major Professor

Ashok Kumar, Ph.D.


BST, Sputtering, Nanocrystalline diamond, Interdiffusion, Dielectric permittivity, Surface acoustic wave


The composition-dependent Curie temperature and bias-dependant dielectric permittivity of Barium Strontium Titanate (BST) makes it very attractive for tunable application in the RF/Microwave regime. In this research work, the performance of BST varactors fabricated on the conventional Pt/Ti/SiO2/Si bottom electrode stack were compared with those fabricated using chemical vapor deposited Nanocrystalline Diamond (NCD) as the diffusion barrier layer instead of SiO2. The varactors fabricated on NCD films displayed much better symmetry in capacitance-voltage behavior and better overall quality factors than varactors fabricated on SiO2. The improvement in performance can be attributed to existence of stable interfaces in the devices fabricated on NCD which reduced the bottom electrode losses at high frequencies. The SiO2 based BST varactors on the other hand displayed better reliability and breakdown fields.

The main purpose of this research work is to develop a robust Metal Insulator Metal (MIM) structure to achieve better all round performance of BST varactors. In the second part of this research work, the prospect of developing diamond based layered Surface Acoustic Wave (SAW) devices using Ba0.8Sr0.2TiO3 as the piezoelectric layer is investigated. Structural characterization of BST thin films deposited on Si/NCD/Pt and Si/SiO2/Ti/Pt stack were performed using X-Ray Diffraction (XRD) and Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM). Cross-sectional studies on the two stacks were performed using Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM). X-Ray Mapping (XRM) was then done to ascertain the quality of the interfaces and to check for interdiffusion between layers. MIM structures in the Coplanar Waveguide (CPW) configuration were fabricated using conventional lithography and etching techniques for high frequency measurements. The performance of the fabricated varactors was characterized from 100 MHz to 1 GHz.

For the SAW application, structural characterization of Ba0.8Sr0.2TiO3 on Chemical Vapor Deposited (CVD) diamond was done and the deposition procedure was optimized to obtain thick BST films. SAW bandpass filters and resonators were designed wherein the device geometry was varied over a wide range in order to characterize the variation in device performance with geometry. Finally interdigital capacitor structures were fabricated and used for conducting Curie temperature measurements on the deposited BST films in order to determine the operation range of the deposited BST films.