Herein, growth and characterization of spray deposited strontium doped zinc oxide thin films is presented. The structural analysis demonstrates that, thin films are polycrystalline with hexagonal wurtzite structure. The surface energy of ZnO:Sr (3%) thin films is decreased along c-axis. The optical dispersion analysis revealed the enhancement of packing density in ZnO:Sr films. The observed improvement in hydrophobicity of ZnO:Sr thin films is owing to collective effect of decreased surface energy and increased packing density. These dopant dependent variation in hydrophobicity of ZnO:Sr thin films is illustrative for self-cleaning driven applications.

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