Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science



First Advisor

Maryanne Collinson


Sol-gel derived silica thin film synthesis has gained prominence because of the mild processing conditions and widespread understanding of the chemistry of the process. Traditionally, silicate films are prepared by spin- and dip-coating but these materials lack the desired porosity for sensing, separations and catalysis applications. Electrochemical deposition was proposed to improve the porosity of silicate films. The main aims of this work were threefold. First we wanted to elucidate what parameters influenced film formation during electrodeposition. Then we wanted to understand how these parameters affected the morphology of the materials prepared. These films were characterized by profilometry, AFM, and SEM-EDX. Films electrodeposited via cathodic potentials are particle-like, thicker and rougher than spin-coated films. The final goal was to pattern a substrate with silica using photolithography, sol-gel process and electrodeposition. Successful patterning was hindered by the deposition of silica on glass, especially when the gap between ITO bands was smaller than the diffusion layer thickness of the electroactive species.


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Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission

May 2010

Included in

Chemistry Commons