A novel method for the preparation of biaxial textured nickel oxide on commercially available nickel via a modified surface oxidation epitaxy (SOE) process has been developed. Following studies of different heat-treatment procedures for both texturing of nickel and for the fabrication of nickel oxide the following method was found to yield the best results. Nickel was first textured under an argon — hydrogen atmosphere at 1000°C for 120 min, then the temperature was lowered to 800°C and the atmosphere was changed to argon with 3 ppm oxygen. Smooth and crack free c-axis textured and a–b aligned NiO buffer layers with an out-of-plane texture of 7.8° and an in-plane texture of 9.4° were successfully produced. Higher oxygen partial pressure and temperatures resulted in increased surface roughness and excessive grain growth.
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