Modelling of the humidity effect on the barrier height in SnO2 varistors

I. Skuratovsky, A. Glot*, E. Traversa

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Tin dioxide based SnO2-Bi2O3-Co 3O4-Nb2O5-Cr2O 3 ceramic device with combined varistor and humidity-sensitive properties is studied. This varistor-sensor has high humidity sensitivity coefficient of about 420 at low electric field and high non-linearity coefficient of about 50 at electric field 3500 V cm-1. Current-voltage characteristics of the samples with separate electrodes for the central and the peripheral parts are studied in air with different relative humidity. It is shown that current through the peripheral part of a sample is increased much stronger than through the central part. The observed increase of low-field current on relative humidity is explained by the decrease of the barrier height. The estimations of the lowering of the barrier height in a humid air is performed using the suggested models.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)130-137
Number of pages8
JournalMaterials Science and Engineering B: Solid-State Materials for Advanced Technology
Issue number1-3
StatePublished - Mar 15 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • Electrical measurements
  • Electron conduction
  • Grain boundaries
  • Sensors
  • Tin dioxide ceramics
  • Varistors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Materials Science
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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