YBCO films were grown on CeO2/YSZ/CeO2 buffered rolling-assisted biaxially textured substrates (RABiTS) by pulsed lased deposition (PLD). CeO2 cap layer was deposited prior to YBCO growth. CeO2 cap layers of different thickness were prepared to evaluate the thickness dependence of the YBCO films. The microstructure and surface morphology of the films were examined by X-ray diffraction (XRD) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). It is found that the thickness of the cap layer can remarkably affect the preparation of the subsequent YBCO layer. The possible mechanisms responsible for the dependence of the structure and the preparation of the YBCO films on the thickness of the CeO2 cap layers are discussed.© (2010) COPYRIGHT SPIE--The International Society for Optical Engineering. Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.