Date of Award

Spring 5-20-2021

Degree Type


Degree Name

MS Physics




M. Alper Sahiner, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Erie Morales, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Stephen Kelty, Ph.D.


SOFC, YSZ, Resistivity, Thin Film, PLD, SEM


Solid Oxide Fuel Cells are devices that use electrochemical reactions to convert chemical energy from fuel to electricity. In comparison with coal power plants, a Solid Oxide Fuel Cell, produces a higher electrical conversion efficiency. However, at higher temperatures (1000°C) it creates a lower ionic conductivity, which limit the Solid Oxide Fuel Cells. When lowering the temperature, the ohmic resistance increases. In our research, an Yttrium Stabilized Zirconium layer will be produced from a fine dimple grain structure allowing high flow of oxygen mobility. This mobility increases ionic conductivity and decrease ohmic loss. The goal of our research is first to determine the surface resistivity for the simulated Yttrium Stabilized Zirconium structures optimize the experimental film deposition parameters that will lead to minimum surface resistivity in these films Yttrium Stabilized Zirconium thin film synthesis using pulsed laser deposition leads to minimize ohmic resistance of the films at optimum film thickness. We will use Zirconium, , and Silicon substrates for the Yttrium Stabilized Zirconium films and compare the properties of the Yttrium Stabilized Zirconium layer. The thin films will be characterized through electrical measurements such as 4-point probe resistivity measurements as well as Scanning Electron Microscopy, for the structural characterization.