WO2016128054A1 - Layer stack adapted for use in an electro-optical device, electro-optical device, and method for manufacturing a layer stack adapted for use in an electro-optical device. - Google Patents

Layer stack adapted for use in an electro-optical device, electro-optical device, and method for manufacturing a layer stack adapted for use in an electro-optical device. Download PDF

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Publication number
WO2016128054A1
WO2016128054A1 PCT/EP2015/052964 EP2015052964W WO2016128054A1 WO 2016128054 A1 WO2016128054 A1 WO 2016128054A1 EP 2015052964 W EP2015052964 W EP 2015052964W WO 2016128054 A1 WO2016128054 A1 WO 2016128054A1
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Prior art keywords
line pattern
transparent conductive
oxide layer
conductive oxide
lines
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PCT/EP2015/052964
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French (fr)
Inventor
Thomas Deppisch
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Applied Materials, Inc.
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Priority to PCT/EP2015/052964 priority Critical patent/WO2016128054A1/en
Publication of WO2016128054A1 publication Critical patent/WO2016128054A1/en

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Classifications

    • GPHYSICS
    • G06COMPUTING; CALCULATING; COUNTING
    • G06FELECTRIC DIGITAL DATA PROCESSING
    • G06F3/00Input arrangements for transferring data to be processed into a form capable of being handled by the computer; Output arrangements for transferring data from processing unit to output unit, e.g. interface arrangements
    • G06F3/01Input arrangements or combined input and output arrangements for interaction between user and computer
    • G06F3/03Arrangements for converting the position or the displacement of a member into a coded form
    • G06F3/041Digitisers, e.g. for touch screens or touch pads, characterised by the transducing means
    • G06F3/044Digitisers, e.g. for touch screens or touch pads, characterised by the transducing means by capacitive means
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H01BASIC ELECTRIC ELEMENTS
    • H01LSEMICONDUCTOR DEVICES; ELECTRIC SOLID STATE DEVICES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • H01L31/00Semiconductor devices sensitive to infra-red radiation, light, electromagnetic radiation of shorter wavelength or corpuscular radiation and adapted either for the conversion of the energy of such radiation into electrical energy or for the control of electrical energy by such radiation; Processes or apparatus peculiar to the manufacture or treatment thereof or of parts thereof; Details thereof
    • H01L31/02Details
    • H01L31/0224Electrodes
    • H01L31/022466Electrodes made of transparent conductive layers, e.g. TCO, ITO layers
    • GPHYSICS
    • G06COMPUTING; CALCULATING; COUNTING
    • G06FELECTRIC DIGITAL DATA PROCESSING
    • G06F2203/00Indexing scheme relating to G06F3/00 - G06F3/048
    • G06F2203/041Indexing scheme relating to G06F3/041 - G06F3/045
    • G06F2203/04103Manufacturing, i.e. details related to manufacturing processes specially suited for touch sensitive devices
    • GPHYSICS
    • G06COMPUTING; CALCULATING; COUNTING
    • G06FELECTRIC DIGITAL DATA PROCESSING
    • G06F2203/00Indexing scheme relating to G06F3/00 - G06F3/048
    • G06F2203/041Indexing scheme relating to G06F3/041 - G06F3/045
    • G06F2203/04112Electrode mesh in capacitive digitiser: electrode for touch sensing is formed of a mesh of very fine, normally metallic, interconnected lines that are almost invisible to see. This provides a quite large but transparent electrode surface, without need for ITO or similar transparent conductive material

Abstract

The present disclosure provides a layer stack (100) adapted for use in touch screen panels, electro-chromic glasses and photovoltaic devices, including: a transparent conductive oxide layer (110); and a line pattern (120) of a conductive material applied to the transparent conductive oxide layer (110), wherein the transparent conductive oxide layer (110) and the line pattern (120) are in electrical contact with each other.

Description

LAYER STACK ADAPTED FOR USE IN TOUCH SCREEN PANELS, ELECTRO-CHROMIC GLASSES AND PHOTOVOLTAIC DEVICES, AND METHOD FOR MANUFACTURING A LAYER STACK ADAPTED FOR USE IN TOUCH SCREEN PANELS, ELECTRO-CHROMIC GLASSES AND PHOTOVOLTAIC DEVICES

FIELD

[0001] Embodiments of the present disclosure relate to a layer stack adapted for use in an electro-optical device, an electro-optical device, and a method for manufacturing a layer stack adapted for use in an electro-optical device. Embodiments of the present disclosure particularly relate to a layer stack adapted for use in a touch screen panel, a touch screen panel, and a method for manufacturing a layer stack adapted for use in a touch screen panel.

BACKGROUND

[0002] Electro-optical devices can be electronic devices with combined electrical and optical characteristics. As an example, electro-optical devices can include touch screen panels and electro -chromic glasses. Touch screen panels are a particular class of electronic visual display able to detect and locate a touch within a display area. Touch screen panels can include a layer stack disposed over a screen device and configured to sense touch. Such a layer stack can be substantially transparent, so that light in the visible spectrum emitted by the screen can be transmitted therethrough. Touching the display area of such a touch screen panel can result in a measurable change of capacitance in a region of the layer stack. The change in capacitance may be measured using different technologies such that the position of the touch can be determined.

[0003] A layer stack for use with electro-optical devices, such as touch screen panels, is subject to some particular considerations. A steadily increasing size of electro-optical devices, such as displays, should be taken into account. In particular, electrical characteristics of such large touch screen panel sizes are of increasing interest. As an example, a high conductivity or low resistance of the layer stack is considered beneficial. Another point that could be taken into account is related to optical characteristics of electro-optical devices, e.g., the appearance to the user. In particular, layer structures of the layer stack should not be visible for the user.

[0004] In view of the above, new layer stacks adapted for use in an electro-optical device, electro-optical devices, and methods for manufacturing a layer stack adapted for use in an electro-optical device that overcome at least some of the problems in the art are beneficial. In particular, new layer stacks, electro-optical devices and methods for manufacturing the layer stack, which provide enhanced electrical performance compared to conventional structures, are beneficial.

SUMMARY

[0005] In light of the above, a layer stack adapted for use in an electro-optical device, an electro-optical device, and a method for manufacturing a layer stack adapted for use in an electro-optical device are provided. Further aspects, benefits, and features of the present disclosure are apparent from the claims, the description, and the accompanying drawings.

[0006] According to an aspect of the present disclosure, a layer stack adapted for use in an electro-optical device is provided. The layer stack includes a transparent conductive oxide layer and a line pattern of a conductive material applied to the transparent conductive oxide layer, wherein the transparent conductive oxide layer and the line pattern are in electrical contact with each other.

[0007] According to another aspect of the present disclosure, an electro-optical device is provided. The electro-optical device incudes the layer stack according to the embodiments described herein.

[0008] According to yet another aspect of the present disclosure, a method for manufacturing a layer stack adapted for use in an electro-optical device is provided. The method includes depositing of a transparent conductive oxide layer, and applying a line pattern of a conductive material to the transparent conductive oxide layer, wherein the transparent conductive oxide layer and the line pattern are in electrical contact with each other. [0009] Embodiments are also directed at apparatuses for carrying out the disclosed methods and include apparatus parts for performing each described method aspect. These method aspects may be performed by way of hardware components, a computer programmed by appropriate software, by any combination of the two or in any other manner. Furthermore, embodiments according to the disclosure are also directed at methods for operating the described apparatus. It includes method aspects for carrying out every function of the apparatus.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0010] So that the manner in which the above recited features of the present disclosure can be understood in detail, a more particular description of the disclosure, briefly summarized above, may be had by reference to embodiments. The accompanying drawings relate to embodiments of the disclosure and are described in the following:

FIG. 1 shows a schematic view of a layer stack adapted for use in an electro-optical device according to embodiments described herein;

FIG. 2 shows a cross-sectional view of a layer stack adapted for use in an electro-optical device according to further embodiments described herein;

FIGs. 3A-D show schematic views of line patterns according to embodiments described herein;

FIG. 4 shows a schematic view of a cobweb-like line pattern according to embodiments described herein;

FIG. 5 shows a schematic view of a line pattern having a varying line spacing according to embodiments described herein;

FIG. 6A shows a schematic view of an electro-optical device according to embodiments described herein; FIG. 6B shows a schematic view of a section of a line pattern of the electro-optical device of FIG. 6A according to embodiments described herein;

FIGs. 7A-D show schematic views of line patterns according to further embodiments described herein;

FIG. 8 shows a flow chart of method for manufacturing a layer stack adapted for use in an electro-optical device according to embodiments described herein;

FIG. 9 shows a schematic view of a deposition apparatus for manufacturing a layer stack according to embodiments described herein; and

FIG. 10 shows a schematic view of another deposition apparatus

1000 for manufacturing a layer stack according to embodiments described herein.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF EMBODIMENTS

[0011] Reference will now be made in detail to the various embodiments of the disclosure, one or more examples of which are illustrated in the figures. Within the following description of the drawings, the same reference numbers refer to same components. Generally, only the differences with respect to individual embodiments are described. Each example is provided by way of explanation of the disclosure and is not meant as a limitation of the disclosure. Further, features illustrated or described as part of one embodiment can be used on or in conjunction with other embodiments to yield yet a further embodiment. It is intended that the description includes such modifications and variations.

[0012] The present disclosure provides a layer stack having a line pattern disposed on a transparent conductive oxide layer, such as an indium tin oxide layer (ITO layer). The line pattern of the conductive material allows for a reduced electrical resistance, such as a sheet resistance, of the layer stack. In other words, a conductivity of the layer stack can be improved. Since the conductive material is patterned, the conductive material only covers a fraction or portion of the surface area of the transparent conductive oxide layer. A transmittance of the layer stack can be ensured. In particular, the line pattern can be invisible for a human eye. The layer stack of the present disclosure can, for example, be used in an electro-chromic glass or window, a touch screen panel, and a photovoltaic device such as a solar cell.

[0013] The line pattern of the present disclosure can include small lines, such as small metal lines. According to some embodiments, a structure size of the lines does not exceed, for example, 3 micrometers in order to reduce a visibility of the line pattern for the human eye. In some implementations, a distance between the lines can be sufficient to ensure a transmission of light through the layer stack. As an example, a line width of 3 micrometers can be provided in combination with a line spacing of 300 micrometers. About 1% of the total area of the transparent conductive oxide layer can be covered with the conductive material of the line pattern, and a transmission of light through the layer stack can be ensured.

[0014] Creating a line pattern can be challenging and/or the yield can be low. When using, for example, coating techniques or printing techniques for forming the line pattern, the pinhole and particle density can be high, and defects in long lines, such as metal lines, can occur. The line pattern of the present disclosure provides redundancy, and a high yield can be achieved. As an example, one or more lines of the line pattern could be broken without significantly compromising electrical characteristics, such as a low sheet resistance, of the layer stack. In particular, broken lines will not cause a failure, since a current applied to the layer stack can go through the transparent conductive oxide layer. In other words, the current is redirected through the transparent conductive oxide layer, i.e., the current bypasses the broken line.

[0015] The layer stack of the present disclosure having the double conductive system (transparent conductive oxide layer (TCO) + line pattern) can reduce a sheet resistance of the layer stack. As an example, if a 150 Ohm/square TCO (e.g., indium tin oxide, ΓΓΟ) would have a line pattern with a line width of 2.5 micrometer and a line spacing of 250 micrometers (0.3 Ohm/square) applied thereto, the resulting sheet resistance of the layer stack would be reduced to 25 Ohm/square. This can, for example, allow for larger touch screen panel sizes, and can homogenize a switching speed of an electro-chromic glass or window.

[0016] FIG. 1 shows a schematic view of a layer stack 100 adapted for use in an electro- optical device according to embodiments described herein. FIG. 2 shows a cross-sectional view of the layer stack 100 provided on a substrate 10.

[0017] The layer stack 100 of the present disclosure includes a transparent conductive oxide layer 110 and a line pattern 120 of a conductive material applied to the transparent conductive oxide layer 110. The transparent conductive oxide layer 110 and the line pattern 120 are in electrical contact with each other. The line pattern 120 can be formed as a grid, mesh, or matrix. According to some embodiments, the layer stack 100 can be disposed on or over a substrate 10. The term "substrate" as used herein shall embrace inflexible substrates, e.g., a wafer, slices of transparent crystal such as sapphire or the like, a glass plate, and polyethylene terephthalate (PET), and flexible substrates such as a web and a foil, e.g., including polyethylene terephthalate (PET).

[0018] The transparent conductive oxide layer 110, such as an indium tin oxide (ITO) layer, can, for example, be used for a conductive electrode for a touch screen panel. A resistance of the transparent conductive oxide layer 110 can be limited and/or can depend on a substrate temperature (e.g., during deposition or a post annealing process). Higher conductivity is beneficial for larger touch screen panel sizes (e.g., notebooks and TV). The line pattern 120 applied to the transparent conductive oxide layer 110 can fulfill these aspects, delivering the layer stack 100 with a low resistance, e.g., a low sheet resistance and a high conductivity.

[0019] According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, a combined sheet resistance of the layer stack 100 is less than a sheet resistance of the transparent conductive oxide layer 110. The combined sheet resistance can be defined by the sheet resistances of the transparent conductive oxide layer 110 and the line pattern 120. [0020] Sheet resistance can be a measure of a resistance of thin layers. Sheet resistance can be used in two-dimensional systems in which the thin layers are considered as two- dimensional entities. The term "sheet resistance" implies that the current is along the plane of the layer or sheet, and not perpendicular to it. As used throughout the specification, the unit of the sheet resistance is "ohms per square", which is dimensionally equal to an ohm but can be used for sheet resistance.

[0021] According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, the transparent conductive oxide layer 110 can be selected from the group consisting of: an indium tin oxide (ITO) layer, a doped ΠΌ layer, impurity-doped ZnO, ln203, Sn02 and CdO, ITO (In203:Sn), AZO (ZnO:Al), IZO (ZnO: In), GZO (ZnO:Ga), multi-component oxides including or consisting of combinations of ZnO, ln203 and Sn02i a layer system from at least an ITO layer and a metal layer, e.g. an rrO/metal/ITO- stack or a metal/ITO/metal- stack.

[0022] The term "transparent" as used herein shall particularly include the capability of a structure, such as the transparent conductive oxide layer 110 and/or the layer stack 100, to transmit light with relatively low scattering, so that, for example, light transmitted therethrough can be seen in a substantially clear manner.

[0023] According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, the transparent conductive oxide layer 110 is a structured transparent conductive oxide layer. The structure can be a line structure, as it is shown in the example of FIG. 2. The line structure can be used for touch detection in a touch screen panel. Examples for the structured transparent conductive oxide layer are explained with reference to FIGs. 6 A and 6B.

[0024] The line pattern 120 is applied to the transparent conductive oxide layer 110. As an example, the line pattern 120 can be applied, e.g., directly or indirectly applied, to a surface or surface area of the transparent conductive oxide layer 110. The surface or surface area can be an extended surface or surface area of the transparent conductive oxide layer 110. The term "extended surface or surface area" is understood to distinguish over the side surfaces of the transparent conductive oxide layer 110. As an example, the extended surface or surface area can be provided by a length and width of the transparent conductive oxide layer 110. The side surfaces can be provided by a height (e.g., a thickness) and the length or width of the transparent conductive oxide layer 110.

[0025] The term "applied to" shall embrace embodiments in which the line pattern 120 is provided, e.g., deposited, on or over the transparent conductive oxide layer 110. According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein the term "applied to" can be taken to mean "provided on or over". When reference is made to the terms "on" or "over", i.e. one pattern or layer being on or over the other, it is understood that, e.g., starting from the substrate 10, the transparent conductive oxide layer 110 is deposited on or over the substrate 10, and the line pattern 120, deposited after the transparent conductive oxide layer 110, is thus on or over the transparent conductive oxide layer 110 and over the substrate 10. In other words, the terms "on" or "over" are used to define an order of patterns, layers, layer stacks, and/or films, wherein the starting point can be the substrate 10. This is irrespective of whether the layer stack 100 is depicted upside down or not. In view of this, when reference is made to the terms "on" or "over" it is to be understood that the line pattern 120 can be provided above (e.g., on top) or below (e.g., on the underside of) the transparent conductive oxide layer 110.

[0026] Further, the term "over" should include embodiments where one or more additional layers are provided, e.g., between the transparent conductive oxide layer 110 and the line pattern 120. The additional layers may include, but are not limited to, at least one of an adhesion layer, a contact layer and an antioxidant layer. The term "on" should include embodiments where no additional layers are provided, e.g., between the transparent conductive oxide layer 110 and the line pattern 120. In other words, the transparent conductive oxide layer 110 and the line pattern 120 can be directly disposed on each other, i.e., the transparent conductive oxide layer 110 and the line pattern 120 can be in contact with each other.

[0027] According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, the line pattern 120 can be in full-area contact with the transparent conductive oxide layer 110. The term "full-area contact" as used throughout the disclosure can be understood in a sense that substantially a whole surface area, e.g., a lower surface area of the line pattern 120 is in contact with the transparent conductive oxide layer 110, e.g., a surface or surface area of the transparent conductive oxide layer 110.

[0028] According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, the line pattern 120 covers a fraction of the surface or surface area of the transparent conductive oxide layer 110. When reference is made to the term "fraction", it is understood that the line pattern 120 covers only a portion of the (whole or full) surface or surface area of the transparent conductive oxide layer 110. In other words, the surface or surface area of the transparent conductive oxide layer 110 has a first portion or first fraction that is covered with the line pattern 120 and a second portion or fraction that is not covered with the line pattern 120. As an example, the line pattern 120 covers less than 10%, specifically less than 5%, and more specifically less than 1% of the surface or surface area of the transparent conductive oxide layer 110. This can ensure a sufficient transmittance of the layer stack 100. As an example a transmission loss due to the line pattern 120 can be less than 1%. [0029] According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, the transparent conductive oxide layer 110 is the structured transparent conductive oxide layer. When reference is made to the term "fraction", it is understood that the line pattern 120 covers only a portion of the (whole or full) surface or surface area of the structured transparent conductive oxide layer, e.g., of the (whole or full) surface or surface area of the lines that form the structured transparent conductive oxide layer.

[0030] According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, the conductive material of the line pattern 120 can have a thickness in a range of about 10 to 3000 nm, specifically in a range of 40 to 400 nm, and more specifically in a range of 50 to 300 nm. According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, the conductive material of the line pattern 120 can have a thickness that is less than, or equal to, a line width 121 of the line pattern 120. As an example, the conductive material of the line pattern 120 can be formed using a sputtering process or a printing process, such as a screen printing process. In some implementations, the conductive material of the line pattern 120 can have a thickness of up to 3000 nm when using a printing process. The small thickness of the line pattern 120 can reduce a visibility of the line pattern 120 for a user. The line pattern 120 can even be invisible for a human eye.

[0031] According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, the conductive material of the line pattern 120 includes at least one material selected from the group consisting of: copper, aluminum, gold, silver, molybdenum, alloys thereof, a contact material, an adhesion material, an antioxidant, and any combination thereof. As an example, the conductive material of the line pattern 120 includes copper, an antioxidant and a contact material that can improve at least one of an adhesion and an electrical contact between the transparent conductive oxide layer 110 and the line pattern 120. The contact material can, for example, be silver. According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, one or more further layers can be provided on or over the conductive material of the line pattern 120. The one or more further layers can be selected from the group consisting of: a reflection reducing layer (e.g., a black layer), a corrosion blocking layer, and any combination thereof.

[0032] According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, the layer stack 100 further includes an undercoat layer. The undercoat layer can be provided on or over the substrate 10, and can for example be provided between the substrate 10 and the transparent conductive oxide layer 110. The undercoat layer can be a SiOx layer, e.g., a Si02 layer. The undercoat layer can be configured to provide at least one of a diffusion barrier, adhesion, surface smoothing, and index matching. As an example, the undercoat layer can prevent a diffusion of atoms or molecules from the substrate 10 in the transparent conductive oxide layer 110.

[0033] According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, the layer stack 100 further includes an adhesion layer. The adhesion layer can be provided on or over the transparent conductive oxide layer 110, e.g., between the transparent conductive oxide layer 110 and the conductive material of the line pattern 120. The adhesion layer can improve at least one of adhesion and contact properties, such as an electrical contact, between the conductive material of the line pattern 120 and the transparent conductive oxide layer 110. [0034] The line pattern 110 has one or more lines, such as metal lines. The one or more lines can be straight lines, curved lines, or a combination thereof. According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, a line width 121 of the line pattern 120 is in a range of 1 to 50 micrometers, specifically in a range of 1 to 10 micrometers, and more specifically in a range of 2 to 4 micrometers. As an example, the line width can be about 2.5 or 3 micrometers. The term "line width" can be understood as a width or extension of the individual lines of the line pattern 120, e.g., in a direction substantially perpendicular to a longitudinal or lengthwise extension of the respective individual lines. [0035] According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, a line spacing 122 of the line pattern 120 is in a range of 0.1 to 1 mm, specifically in a range of 0.1 to 0.5 mm, and more specifically in a range of 0.2 to 0.3 mm. As an example, the line spacing can be about 250 micrometers. The term "line spacing" can be understood as a spacing or distance between adjacent lines of the line pattern 120, e.g., in a direction substantially perpendicular to a longitudinal or lengthwise extension of the respective individual lines. The direction can be the width direction described above.

[0036] By coating the line pattern 120 on top of a transparent conductive oxide layer 110, the present disclosure can avoid yield losses due to open lines. Broken lines of the line pattern 120 will not cause a complete failure since the current can go through the transparent conductive oxide layer 110. As an example, a line spacing can be reduced to about 250 micrometers, and a line redundancy of greater than 4 can be achieved. The present disclosure particularly allows for a production of a high transmission and low sheet resistance layer stack with high yield. [0037] The embodiments described herein can be utilized for deposition, e.g., thin film deposition, on large area substrates, e.g. for electro-chromic windows or touch screen panel manufacturing. According to some embodiments, large area substrates may have a size of at least 0.67 m2. As an example, the size can be about 0.67m2 (0.73x0.92m - Gen 4.5) to about 8 m2, or can be about 2 m2 to about 9 m2, or can be even up to 12 m2. In particular, the large area substrate can be GEN 4.5, which corresponds to about 0.67 m2 substrates (0.73x0.92m), GEN 5, which corresponds to about 1.4 m2 substrates (1.1 m x 1.3 m), GEN 7.5, which corresponds to about 4.29 m2 substrates (1.95 m x 2.2 m), GEN 8.5, which corresponds to about 5.7m2 substrates (2.2 m x 2.5 m), or even GEN 10, which corresponds to about 8.7 m2 substrates (2.85 m x 3.05 m). Even larger generations such as GEN 11 and GEN 12 and corresponding substrate areas can similarly be implemented. The embodiments described herein can also be utilized for deposition, e.g., thin film deposition, on flexible substrates, such as a web or a foil. As an example, the substrate includes polyethylene terephthalate (PET). In some implementations, a substrate width of a flexible substrate for indium tin oxide (ITO) can be in a range of 1000 to 1500 mm, and can specifically be about 1300 mm. A substrate width of a glass substrate can be up to 2 m. [0038] FIGs. 3A-D show schematic views of line patterns according to embodiments described herein. FIG. 3A shows a schematic view of a first line pattern 300 with vertical lines. FIG. 3B shows a schematic view of a second line pattern 310 with diagonal lines. FIG. 3C shows a schematic view of a third line pattern 320 with vertical lines and horizontal lines defining a rectangular- shaped line pattern. FIG. 3D shows a schematic view of a fourth line pattern 330 with first and second diagonal lines defining a diamond- shaped line pattern. FIGs. 3A-D show line patterns having a high redundancy.

[0039] According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, the line pattern applied to the transparent conductive oxide layer includes two or more lines. The two or more lines can be substantially parallel lines, such as the vertical lines 302 of the first line pattern 300 illustrated in FIG. 3A. However, the present disclosure is not limited to a vertical orientation of the two or more lines, and the two or more lines can be horizontal lines. In some embodiments, the transparent conductive oxide layer the can be patterned to form a line structure, e.g., configured for touch detection. The lines of the line structure can have a lengthwise or longitudinal extension. In some implementations, the two or more lines can be substantially parallel to the lengthwise or longitudinal extension of the lines of the line structure of the transparent conductive oxide layer.

[0040] As used throughout the specification, the term "substantially parallel" relates to a substantially parallel orientation, e.g., of the two or more lines of the line pattern, wherein a deviation of a few degrees, e.g. up to 1° or even up to 5°, from an exact parallel orientation is still considered as "substantially parallel". The term "vertical" or "vertical orientation" is understood to distinguish over "horizontal" or "horizontal orientation".

[0041] FIG. 3B shows a schematic view of a second line pattern 310 with diagonal lines 312. The diagonal lines 312 can be substantially parallel lines. As used throughout the specification, the term "diagonal" relates to an inclination of the two or more lines of the line pattern with respect to a reference line. As an example, the transparent conductive oxide layer can be patterned to form the line structure. In some implementations, the reference line can be parallel to the lengthwise or longitudinal extension of the lines of the line structure of the transparent conductive oxide layer. The reference line can be a vertical reference line or a horizontal reference line. As an example, the horizontal reference line and the vertical reference line can extend in an x-direction and a y-direction, respectively, as explained with reference to FIGs. 6A and 6B.

[0042] According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, the line pattern includes two or more first lines and two or more second lines. At least one line of the two or more first lines crosses at least one line of the two or more second lines. As an example, the two or more first lines and the two or more second lines form a grid, mesh, or matrix.

[0043] In some implementation, the two or more first lines can be substantially parallel lines, and/or the two or more second lines can be substantially parallel lines. As an example, the two or more first lines can be horizontal lines and the two or more second lines can be vertical lines. In other examples, the two or more first lines can be vertical lines and the two or more second lines can be horizontal lines. The two or more first lines can extend lengthwise in a first direction, e.g., a horizontal direction and/or x-direction. The two or more second lines can extend lengthwise in a second direction, e.g., a vertical direction and/or y-direction. The first direction and the second direction can be substantially perpendicular to each other.

[0044] As used throughout the specification, the term "substantially perpendicular" relates to a substantially perpendicular orientation, e.g., of the two or more first lines and the two or more second lines, wherein a deviation of a few degrees, e.g. up to 1° or even up to 5°, from an exact perpendicular orientation is still considered as "substantially perpendicular".

[0045] In the example of FIG. 3C, the two or more first lines are horizontal lines 322, and the two or more second lines are vertical lines 324. The two or more first lines and the two or more second lines form a rectangular- shaped line pattern. The "term rectangular- shaped line pattern" is understood in a sense that the two or more first lines and the two or more second lines define a plurality of openings (e.g., grid openings) that have a rectangular shape.

[0046] In the embodiment illustrated in FIG. 3D, the two or more first lines are first inclined lines 332 (e.g., first diagonal lines), and the two or more second lines are second inclined lines 334 (e.g., second diagonal lines). The two or more first inclined lines 332 and the two or more second inclined lines 334 form a diamond- shaped line pattern. The "term diamond- shaped line pattern" is understood in a sense that the two or more first lines and the two or more second lines define a plurality of openings (e.g., grid openings) that have a diamond shape.

[0047] The line patterns of the present disclosure provide redundancy, and a high yield can be achieved. As an example, one or more lines of the line pattern could be broken without significantly compromising electrical characteristics, such as a sheet resistance, of the layer stack. In particular, broken lines will not cause a failure, since the current can go through the transparent conductive oxide layer and bypass the broken lines.

[0048] FIG. 4 shows a schematic view of a cobweb-like line pattern 400 according to embodiments described herein.

[0049] The cobweb-like line pattern 400 has two or more first lines, such as closed lines 402, and two or more second lines, such as crossing lines 404. As an example, the closed lines 402 form a closed loop, e.g., having an oval or circular shape. The closed lines 402 can be nested. In other words, the closed lines 402 can have different extensions, e.g., different diameters, such that the closed lines 402 are provided at a distance from each other (e.g., with the line spacing therebetween). The crossing lines 404 can be configured to cross at least some lines of the closed lines 402. As an example, the crossing lines 404 can be straight lines.

[0050] According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, the line pattern has a line density. The line density can be defined as a number of lines per unit area. The line density can also be defined using a fraction or portion of a unit area of the surface of the transparent conductive oxide layer that is covered with the conductive material of the line pattern. According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, the line pattern has a homogenous line density. In other embodiments, the line pattern has an inhomogeneous or graded line density.

[0051] As an example, the higher the line density, the higher is the electrical conductivity of the layer stack or the lower is the sheet resistance of the layer stack. Referring to FIG. 4, a line density is higher in a central portion of the cobweb-like line pattern 400 compared to outer (or edge) portions. In other words, a sheet resistance is lower in the central portion of the cobweb-like line pattern compared to a sheet resistance in the outer (or edge) portions. This can, for example, homogenize a switching speed of an electro-chromic glass or window.

[0052] FIG. 5 shows a schematic view of a line pattern 500 having an inhomogeneous (e.g., varying) or graded line spacing between substantially parallel lines according to embodiments described herein. The line pattern 500 can have any of the configurations described with reference to FIGs. 1 to 4. The inhomogeneous or varying line spacing can provide for the inhomogeneous or varying line density described with reference to FIG. 4.

[0053] As exemplarily shown in FIG. 5, the line spacing in a central region 502 (also referred to as "middle region") of the line pattern 500 is less than the line spacing in one or more of edge regions 504 of the line pattern 500. The central region 502 and the edge regions 504 can be adjacent regions. As an example, a first edge region of the edge regions 504 can be provided at a first side of the central region 502, e.g., on a left side. A second edge region of the edge regions 504 can be provided at a second side of the central region 502, e.g., on a second side. [0054] According to some embodiments, the line spacing increases or decreases from the central region 502 to the edge regions 504. As an example, the line spacing increases or decreases gradually or stepwise. In some implementations, the central region 502 can have a first line spacing. The first line spacing can be substantially constant in the central region 502. The edge regions 504 can have a second line spacing. The second line spacing can be substantially constant in the edge regions 504. In some embodiments, at least one line spacing of the first line spacing and the second line spacing increases or decreases, e.g., gradually or stepwise. As an example, the second line spacing of the edge regions 504 increases or decreases, e.g., gradually or stepwise, towards the central region 502. [0055] According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, at least one of a line width and a line thickness of the line pattern varies. As an example, the electrical conductivity and/or the sheet resistance of the layer stack can be adjusted by varying at least one of the line width and the line thickness, similarly to the varying line density described with reference to FIGs. 4 and 5. In some implementations, at least one of the line width and the line thickness can increase or decrease gradually, e.g., from the edge regions 504 towards the central region 502.

[0056] FIG. 6A shows a schematic view of an electro-optical device according to embodiments described herein. FIG. 6B shows a schematic view of a section of a line pattern of the electro-optical device of FIG. 6A, according to embodiments described herein. The exemplary electro-optical device of FIGs. 6A and 6B is a touch screen panel 600. However, the present disclosure is not limited thereto and the electro-optical device can be selected from the group including: an electro-chromic glass or window (e.g., a smart glass), the touch screen panel, and a photovoltaic device (e.g., a solar cell).

[0057] The electro-optical device, such as the touch screen panel 600, includes a layer stack according to the embodiments of the present disclosure. The touch screen panel 600 can include a screen device (not shown). As an example, the screen device can be a liquid crystal display (LCD), a PDP (Plasma Display Panel), an organic light-emitting diode (OLED) display, and the like.

[0058] According to some embodiments, the touch screen panel 600 includes a first layer stack 610 and a second layer stack 620. The first layer stack 610 and the second layer stack 620 can be configured for touch detection. As an example, the first layer stack 610, and in particular a first transparent conductive oxide layer of the first layer stack 610 can be structured to provide one or more first touch detection lines 612 (e.g., x-lines). The one or more first touch detection lines 612 can have the line pattern provided on or over the transparent conductive oxide layer. Examples for the line patterns are shown in FIGs 7A- D. The second layer stack 620, and in particular a second transparent conductive oxide layer of the second layer stack 620, can be structured to provide one or more second touch detection lines 622 (e.g., y-lines). The one or more second touch detection lines 622 can have the line pattern provided on or over the transparent conductive oxide layer. Examples for the line patterns are shown in FIGs 7A-D. The one or more first touch detection lines 612 and the one or more second touch detection lines 622 can cross, or at least partially overlay each other. The one or more first touch detection lines 612 and the one or more second touch detection lines 622 can extend in substantially perpendicular directions to form, e.g., a matrix. As an example, the one or more first touch detection lines 612 can lengthwise extend in a first direction (e.g., an x-direction and/or a horizontal direction). The one or more second touch detection lines 622 can lengthwise extend in a second direction (e.g., a y-direction and/or a vertical direction).

[0059] The one or more first touch detection lines 612 and the one or more second touch detection lines 622 can be separated by an insulating layer. In particular, the one or more first touch detection lines 612 and the one or more second touch detection lines 622 can be electrically isolated from each other. A touch on a display area of the touch screen panel 600 can result in a measurable change of a capacitance between the one or more first touch detection lines 612 and the one or more second touch detection lines 622. The change in capacitance may be measured using different technologies, so that the position of the touch can be determined. According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, the one or more first touch detection lines 612 can be provided on a first foil, and the one or more second touch detection lines 622 can be provided on a second foil. The first foil and the second foil can be laminated to each other to form the touch screen panel 600. The one or more first touch detection lines 612 can be electrically insulated from the one or more second touch detection lines 622 on the second foil. In other implementations, the one or more first touch detection lines 612 can be provided on a first side or first surface (e.g., a front surface) of a substrate, and the one or more second touch detection lines 622 can be provided on a second side or second surface (e.g., a back surface) of the same substrate.

[0060] According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, the transparent conductive oxide layer can be structured to form a diamond-shaped pattern. As an example, the one or more first touch detection lines 612 and the one or more second touch detection lines 622 can have one or more first diamond- shaped portions 614 and one or more second diamond- shaped portions 624, respectively. Adjacent diamond- shaped portions can be connected using connection potions, such as one or more first connection portions 616 of the one or more first touch detection lines 612 and one or more second connection portions 626 of the one or more second touch detection lines 622. In some implementations, the one or more first connection portions 616 and the one or more second connection portions 626 can cross or overlay each other. The one or more first connection portions 616 and the one or more second connection portions 626 can also be referred to as "bridge portions". As an example, only the one or more first connection portions 616 and the one or more second connection portions 626 can cross or overlay each other, and the one or more first diamond- shaped portions 614 and the one or more second diamond- shaped portions 624 cannot overlay or cross each other, as shown in the example of FIG. 6B.

[0061] In some implementations, two or more connection lines 630 are connected to edge portions of the one or more first touch detection lines 612 and the one or more second touch detection lines 614. The two or more connection lines 630 can collect touch detection signals measured by the one or more first touch detection lines 612 and the one or more second touch detection lines 614 for providing the touch detection signals to a processing device for touch detection. [0062] FIGs. 7A-D show schematic views of line patterns according to further embodiments described herein.

[0063] According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, the transparent conductive oxide layer can be structured to form a pattern. In some embodiments, the transparent conductive oxide layer the can be patterned to form a line structure, e.g., configured for touch detection. The lines of the line structure can have a lengthwise or longitudinal extension. According to some embodiments, a profile or contour of the line pattern can correspond to a profile or contour of the structured transparent conductive oxide layer.

[0064] As an example, the transparent conductive oxide layer can be structured to form a diamond- shaped pattern, as it is shown in the examples of FIGs. 6 A and 6B. The profile or contour of the line pattern can correspond to the diamond- shaped pattern. In particular, the profile or contour of the line pattern can be diamond-shaped. The line pattern can be configured according to the embodiments described herein. As an example, FIG. 7A shows the line pattern with vertical lines, as illustrated in FIG. 3A. FIG. 7B shows a line pattern with diagonal lines, as illustrated in FIG. 3B. FIG. 7C shows a line pattern with vertical lines and horizontal lines, as illustrated in FIG. 3C. FIG. 7D shows a line pattern with first and second diagonal lines, as illustrated in FIG. 3D.

[0065] FIG. 8 shows a flow chart of method 800 for manufacturing a layer stack adapted for use in an electro-optical device according to embodiments described herein. [0066] The method 800 includes in block 810 a depositing of a transparent conductive oxide layer and an applying of a line pattern of a conductive material to the transparent conductive oxide layer. In some implementations, the applying of the line pattern of the conductive material to the transparent conductive oxide layer includes in block 820 a depositing of the conductive material on a surface of the transparent conductive oxide layer, and in block 830 a structuring of the conductive material to form the line pattern. According to some implementations, the structuring of the conductive material can include an etching process, such as a wet etching process. In some examples, a mask and/or a photoresist can be provided to deposit the line pattern. According to some embodiments, the conductive material can be deposited using a sputtering process or a printing process, such as a screen printing process.

[0067] According to some embodiments, the transparent conductive oxide layer can be a structured transparent conductive oxide layer. The structured transparent conductive oxide layer can, for example, be provided by depositing a transparent conductive oxide layer and patterning of the transparent conductive oxide layer in order to provide the structured transparent conductive oxide layer. As an example, the transparent conductive oxide layer can be patterned to form a line structure, e.g., configured for touch detection. According to some implementations, the patterning of the transparent conductive oxide layer can include an etching process, such as a wet etching process. In some examples, a mask and/or a photoresist can be provided to deposit the structured transparent conductive oxide layer. [0068] According to some embodiments described herein, the method for manufacturing a layer stack adapted for use in an electro-optical device can be conducted by means of computer programs, software, computer software products and the interrelated controllers, which can have a CPU, a memory, a user interface, and input and output means being in communication with the corresponding components of the apparatus for processing a large area substrate.

[0069] FIG. 9 shows a schematic view of deposition apparatus 900 for manufacturing a layer stack according to embodiments described herein. The deposition apparatus 900 can be configured for disposition on an inflexible substrate, such as a glass substrate.

[0070] Exemplarily, a vacuum chamber 902 for deposition of layers therein is shown. As indicated in FIG. 9, at least one further chamber 903 can be provided adjacent to the vacuum chamber 902. The vacuum chamber 902 can be separated from adjacent chambers by a valve having a valve housing 904 and the valve unit 905. A moving direction of the substrate 10 though the vacuum chambers is indicated by arrow 1. The atmosphere in the vacuum chambers, such as vacuum chamber 902, can be individually controlled by generating a technical vacuum, for example with vacuum pumps connected to the vacuum chamber 902, and/or by inserting process gases in a deposition region in the vacuum chamber 902.

[0071] According to some embodiments, process gases can include inert gases such as argon and/or reactive gases such as oxygen, nitrogen, hydrogen and ammonia (NH3), Ozone (03), activated gases or the like. Within the vacuum chamber 902, rollers 910 can be provided in order to transport the carrier 914, having the substrate 10 thereon, into and out of the vacuum chamber 902.

[0072] According to some embodiments, the deposition apparatus 900 can have one or more first deposition arrangements 920 and one or more second deposition arrangements 930. At least one of the one or more first deposition arrangements 920 and the one or more second deposition arrangements 930 can be configured for deposition of layers and/or materials of the layer stack, such as the transparent conductive oxide layer and the conductive material of the line pattern. As an example, a first deposition source 921 of the one or more first deposition arrangements 920 can be configured for a deposition of the transparent conductive oxide layer. A second deposition source 922 of the one or more first deposition arrangements 920 can be configured for a deposition of the conductive material of the line pattern. As an example, the conductive material can be a metal, such as copper. The one or more second deposition arrangements 930 can be configured for a deposition of one or more further layers or patterns on the layer stack including the transparent conductive oxide layer and the conductive material of the line pattern, such as one or more reflection reducing layers (e.g., one or more black layers).

[0073] According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, the one or more black layers are configured to blacken the line pattern so that the structure of the line pattern is substantially invisible for a human eye. The term "blacken" as understood herein may refer to a low surface reflectance of the layer stack, in particular in a visible wavelength range (e.g., about 350 to about 800 nm). The one or more black layers can enhance optical characteristics, e.g., appearance to a user. In particular, structures of the layers, e.g., of the line pattern, are not visible for a user.

[0074] Materials for the one or more black layers can be selected from the group consisting of: MoOx, (Mo-alloy)Ox, MoOxNx, (Mo-alloy)OxNx, MoNbOx, MoNb, indium gallium zinc oxide (IGZO), NiCuOx, AINx, indium zinc oxide (IZO), indium tin oxide (ITO), and any combinations thereof. [0075] Although the example of FIG. 9 shows the one or more first deposition arrangements 920 and the one or more second deposition arrangements 930 within the same vacuum chamber 902, it is to be understood that the one or more first deposition arrangements 920 and the one or more second deposition arrangements 930 can be provided in different vacuum chambers. Likewise, also the first deposition source 921 and the second deposition source 922 of the one or more first deposition arrangements 920 can be provided in different vacuum chambers. [0076] The conductive material deposited on the transparent conductive oxide layer can be structured to form the line pattern. According to some implementations, the structuring of the conductive material can include at least one of an etching process, such as a wet etching process, and a laser structuring process. The structuring can, for example, be performed in a vacuum chamber provided adjacent to the vacuum chamber 902, such as one of the further vacuum chambers 903. As an example, one etching process can be performed for structuring of the conductive material to form the line pattern, and another etching process can be performed for structuring the transparent conductive oxide layer to form the one or more first touch detection lines and the one or more second touch detection lines. In other implementations, a mask can be provided in the vacuum chamber 902 during the deposition of the conductive material to directly deposit the line pattern.

[0077] The deposition sources can for example be cathodes, such as rotatable cathodes, having targets of the material to be deposited on the substrate 10. As an example, the one or more first deposition arrangements 920 can include first cathodes 923, and the one or more second deposition arrangements 930 can include second cathodes 932. The cathodes can be rotatable cathodes with a magnetron therein. Magnetron sputtering can be conducted for depositing of the layers.

[0078] As used herein, "magnetron sputtering" refers to sputtering performed using a magnet assembly, that is, a unit capable of generating a magnetic field. Such a magnet assembly can consist of a permanent magnet. This permanent magnet can be arranged within a rotatable target or coupled to a planar target in a manner such that the free electrons are trapped within the generated magnetic field generated below the rotatable target surface. Such a magnet assembly may also be arranged coupled to a planar cathode. Magnetron sputtering can be realized by a double magnetron cathode, such as, but not limited to, a TwinMag™ cathode assembly.

[0079] According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, the layer stack can be deposited by sputtering, for example magnetron sputtering. As an example, sputtering from a target for the transparent conductive oxide layer and/or the conductive material of the line pattern can be conducted as DC sputtering. The first cathodes 923 are connected to a DC power supply 925 together with anodes 924 collecting electrons during sputtering. In other words, the transparent conductive oxide layer, for example the ΓΓΌ layer, and the conductive material can be sputtered by DC sputtering, e.g., an assembly having the one or more first deposition arrangements 920 with the first cathodes 923 and the anodes 924.

[0080] According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, one or more further layers or patterns, such as the one or more reflection reducing layers (e.g., the one or more black layers) can be deposited by sputtering, for example magnetron sputtering, of rotatable cathodes, such as the second cathodes 932, having an AC power supply 934.

[0081] For simplicity, the one or more first deposition arrangements 920 and the one or more second deposition arrangements 930 are illustrated to be provided in one vacuum chamber 902. Deposition sources for depositing different layers of patterns of the layer stack can be provided in different vacuum chambers, for example further vacuum chambers 903 adjacent to the vacuum chamber 902, as illustrated in FIG. 9. By providing the one or more first deposition arrangements 920 and the one or more second deposition arrangements 930 in different vacuum chambers, an atmosphere with an appropriate processing gas and/or the appropriate degree of technical vacuum can be provided in each deposition area. Likewise, also the first deposition source 921 and the second deposition source 922 of the one or more first deposition arrangements 920 can be provided in different vacuum chambers. [0082] FIG. 10 shows a schematic view of another deposition apparatus 1000 for manufacturing a layer stack according to embodiments described herein. The deposition apparatus 1000 can be configured for disposition on a flexible substrate, such as a web or a foil. As an example, the deposition apparatus 1000 can be a roll-to-roll (R2R) deposition apparatus. [0083] The deposition apparatus 1000 can include at least three chamber portions, such as a first chamber portion 1020 A, a second chamber portion 1020B and a third chamber portion 1020C. One or more deposition sources 1630 and optionally a structuring station 1430 can be provided as processing tools in the third chamber portion 1020C. As an example, the one or more deposition sources 1630 can be configured for deposition of the transparent conductive oxide layer and the conductive material on a substrate 1010, such as a web or foil. The structuring station 1430 can be configured to structure at least one of the transparent conductive oxide layer and the conductive material for forming the touch detection lines and the line pattern, respectively.

[0084] As shown in FIG. 10, the structuring station 1430 can be provided in the third chamber portion 1020C together with the one or more deposition sources 1630. With such a configuration, structuring of at least one of the transparent conductive oxide layer and the conductive material can be performed in-line. In other examples, structuring of at least one of the transparent conductive oxide layer and the conductive material can be performed outside of the third chamber portion 1020C, e.g., in a separate structuring chamber or separate structuring apparatus. In some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, the structuring station 1430 can be configured for conducting at least one of etching and laser structuring. As an example, the structuring station 1430 can be an etching station and/or a laser structuring station. In some implementations, wet etching can be used for structuring of at least one of the transparent conductive oxide layer and the conductive material. The wet etching can be performed outside of the vacuum chambers, e.g., in a wet etching station.

[0085] According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, a first deposition source of the one or more deposition sources 1630 can be configured for deposition of an undercoat layer on the substrate 1010. The undercoat layer can be a SiOx layer, e.g., a Si02 layer. The undercoat layer can be configured to provide at least one of a diffusion barrier, adhesion, surface smoothing, and index matching. As an example, the undercoat layer can prevent a diffusion of atoms or molecules from the substrate 1010 in the transparent conductive oxide layer deposited thereafter. A second deposition source of the one or more deposition sources 1630 can be configured for deposition of the transparent conductive oxide layer on or over the substrate 1010, e.g., on the undercoat layer. A third deposition source of the one or more deposition sources 1630 can be configured for deposition of an adhesion layer on or over the transparent conductive oxide layer. The adhesion layer can improve at least one of adhesion and contact properties, such as an electrical contact, between the conductive material and the transparent conductive oxide layer. A fourth deposition source of the one or more deposition sources 1630 can be configured for deposition of the conductive material of the line pattern on or over the transparent conductive oxide layer, e.g., on the adhesion layer.

[0086] The substrate 1010, e.g. a flexible substrate, can be provided on a first roll 1764, e.g. having a winding shaft. The substrate 1010 is unwound from the first roll 1764 as indicated by the substrate movement direction shown by arrow 1080. A separation wall 1701 can be provided for separation of the first chamber portion 1020A and the second chamber portion 1020B. The separation wall 1701 can further be provided with gap sluices 1140 for having the substrate 1010 pass therethrough. A vacuum flange 1120 provided between the second chamber portion 1020B and the third chamber portion 1020C can be provided with openings to take up at last some processing tools.

[0087] The substrate 1010 can be moved through deposition areas provided at a coating drum 1100 and corresponding to positions of the one or more deposition sources 1630. During operation, the coating drum 1100 rotates around an axis such that the substrate 1010 moves in direction of arrow 1080. According to some embodiments, the substrate 1010 can be guided via one, two or more rollers from the first roll 1764 to the coating drum 1100 and from the coating drum 1100 to a second roll 1764', e.g. having a winding shaft, on which the substrate 1010 can be wound after processing thereof.

[0088] In some implementations, the first chamber portion 1020A is separated in an interleaf chamber portion unit 1020A1 and a substrate chamber portion unit 1020A2. First interleaf rollers 1766 and second interleaf rollers 1105 can be provided as a modular element of the deposition apparatus 1000. The deposition apparatus 1000 can further include a pre-heating unit 1194 to heat the substrate 1010. In some embodiments, a pre- treatment plasma source 1192, e.g. an RF (radio frequency) plasma source can be provided to treat the substrate 1010 with a plasma prior to entering the third chamber portion 1020C. [0089] According to some embodiments, which can be combined with other embodiments described herein, an optical measurement unit 1494 for evaluating a result of the substrate processing and/or one or more ionization units 1492 for adapting a charge on the substrate 1010 can be provided. In some implementations, a sheet resistance measurement unit can be provided. As an example, the sheet resistance measurement unit can be configured for measuring a sheet resistance of the processed substrate having the layer stack according to the present embodiments provided thereon.

[0090] The layer stack according to the present disclosure having the double conductive system (TCO + line pattern) can deliver enhanced electrical performance compared to conventional structures. In particular, the layer stack can reduce a sheet resistance of the layer stack. This can, for example, allow for larger touch screen panel sizes, and can homogenize a switching speed of an electro -chromic glass or window.

[0091] While the foregoing is directed to embodiments of the disclosure, other and further embodiments of the disclosure may be devised without departing from the basic scope thereof, and the scope thereof is determined by the claims that follow.

Claims

1. A layer stack adapted for use in an electro-optical device, comprising: a transparent conductive oxide layer; and a line pattern of a conductive material applied to the transparent conductive oxide layer, wherein the transparent conductive oxide layer and the line pattern are in electrical contact with each other.
2. The layer stack of claim 1, wherein the line pattern is applied to a surface area of the transparent conductive oxide layer, and wherein the line pattern covers a fraction of the surface area of the transparent conductive oxide layer.
3. The layer stack of claim 1 or 2, wherein the line pattern covers less than 10% or less than 1% of the surface area of the transparent conductive oxide layer.
4. The layer stack of one of claims 1 to 3, wherein a line width of the line pattern is in a range of 1 to 50 micrometers or in a range of 2 to 4 micrometers.
5. The layer stack of one of claims 1 to 4, wherein a line spacing of the line pattern is in a range of 0.1 to 1 mm or in a range of 0.2 to 0.3 mm.
6. The layer stack of one of claims 1 to 5, wherein a line spacing of the line pattern varies.
7. The layer stack of one of claims 1 to 6, wherein at least one of a line width and a line thickness of the line pattern varies.
8. The layer stack of one of claims 1 to 7, wherein the line pattern includes two or more first lines and two or more second lines, wherein at least one line of the two or more first lines crosses at least one line of the two or more second lines.
9. The layer stack of one of claims 1 to 8, wherein the line pattern is selected from the group consisting of: a line pattern having parallel lines, a diamond- shaped line pattern, a rectangular- shaped line pattern and a cobweb-like line pattern.
10. The layer stack of one of claims 1 to 9, wherein the conductive material of the line pattern includes at least one material selected from the group consisting of: copper, aluminum, gold, silver, molybdenum, alloys thereof, a contact material, an adhesion material, an antioxidant, and any combination thereof.
11. The layer stack of one of claims 1 to 10, wherein the transparent conductive oxide layer is at least one of an indium tin oxide layer and a structured transparent conductive oxide layer.
12. An electro-optical device, comprising a layer stack of one of claims 1 to 11.
13. The electro-optical device of claim 12, wherein the electro-optical device is selected from the group consisting of: an electro-chromic glass or window, a touch screen panel, and a photovoltaic device.
14. A method for manufacturing a layer stack adapted for use in an electro-optical device, comprising: depositing a transparent conductive oxide layer; and applying a line pattern of a conductive material to the transparent conductive oxide layer, wherein the transparent conductive oxide layer and the line pattern are in electrical contact with each other.
15. The method of claim 14, wherein applying a line pattern of a conductive material to the transparent conductive oxide layer includes: depositing the conductive material on a surface of the transparent conductive oxide layer; and structuring of the conductive material to form the line pattern.
PCT/EP2015/052964 2015-02-12 2015-02-12 Layer stack adapted for use in an electro-optical device, electro-optical device, and method for manufacturing a layer stack adapted for use in an electro-optical device. WO2016128054A1 (en)

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