Solution-processed lithium fluoride (sol-LiF) nanoparticles synthesized in polymeric micelle nanoreactors enabled tuning of the surface work function of tin-doped indium oxide (ITO) films. The micelle reactors provided the means for controlling surface coverage by progressively building up the interlayer through alternating deposition and plasma etch removal of the polymer. In order to determine the surface coverage and average interparticle distance, spatial point pattern analysis was applied to scanning electron microscope images of the nanoparticle dispersions. The work function of the sol-LiF modified ITO, obtained from photoelectron emission yield spectroscopy analysis, was shown to increase with surface coverage of the sol-LiF particles, suggesting a lateral depolarization effect. Analysis of the photoelectron emission energy distribution in the near threshold region revealed the contribution of surface states for surface coverage in excess of 14.1%. Optimization of the interfacial barrier was achieved through contributions from both work function modification and surface states.
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