Jon Downing, M. Ryan, M. McLachlan
Jul 31, 2013
Thin Solid Films
Abstract The role of potassium chloride (KCl) in controlling ZnO nanorod morphology of large area thin films prepared by hydrothermal growth has been extensively investigated. The influence of KCl and growth time on the orientation, morphology and microstructure of the nanorod arrays has been studied with systematic changes in the length, width, density and termination of the nanorods observed. Such changes are attributed to stabilization of the high-energy (002) nanorod surface by the KCl. At low KCl concentrations ( 100 mM) stabilization of the high-energy surface by KCl occurs and planar (002) facets are observed accompanied by increased lateral (100) growth, at the highest KCl concentrations near coalesced (002) terminated rods are observed. Additionally we correlate the KCl concentration with the uniformity of the nanorod arrays; a decrease in polydispersity with increased KCl concentration is observed. The vertical alignment of nanorod arrays was studied using X-ray diffraction, it was found that this parameter increases as growth time and KCl concentration are increased. We propose that the increase in vertical alignment is a result of nanorod–nanorod interactions during the early stages of growth.