Model-blind characterization of thin-film optical constants with momentum-resolved reflectometry

TitleModel-blind characterization of thin-film optical constants with momentum-resolved reflectometry
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsR.A. DeCrescent, S.J. Brown, R.A. Schlitz, M.L. Chabinyc, and J.A. Schuller
Date PublishedDEC 12

Determining optical constants of thin material films is important for characterizing their electronic excitations and for the design of optoelectronic devices. Spectroscopic ellipsometry techniques have emerged as the predominant approach for measuring thin-film optical constants. However, ellipsometry methods suffer from complications associated with highly model-dependent, multi-parameter spectral fitting procedures. Here, we present a model-blind, momentum-resolved reflectometry technique that yields accurate and precise optical constants, with quantifiable error estimates, even for film thicknesses less than 50 nm. These capabilities are demonstrated by interrogating an optical absorption resonance in films of the polymer P(NDI2OD-T2). We show that this approach produces exceptional agreement with UV-Vis-NIR absorption measurements, while simultaneously avoiding the need to construct complicated multi-oscillator spectral models. Finally, we use this procedure to resolve subtle differences in the out-of-plane optical properties of different film morphologies that were previously obscured in ellipsometry measurements. (C) 2016 Optical Society of America