Fabrication and characterization of Si1-xGex nanocrystals in as-grown and annealed structures: A comparative study

  1. Muhammad Taha SultanORCID Logo,
  2. Valentin Serban Teodorescu,
  3. Jón Tómas GuðmundssonORCID Logo,
  4. Andrei ManolescuORCID Logo,
  5. Magdalena Lidia Ciurea and
  6. Halldór Guðfinnur SvavarssonORCID Logo

Submitting author affiliation: Reykjavik University, Reykjavik, Iceland

Beilstein Arch. 2019, 201916. https://doi.org/10.3762/bxiv.2019.16.v1

Published 29 Apr 2019

  • Preprint


Multilayer structure comprising of SiO2/SiGe/SiO2 were obtained by depositing SiO2 layers using reactive direct current magnetron sputtering (dcMS), whereas, Si and Ge were co-sputtered using dcMS and high impulse power magnetron sputtering (HiPIMS), respectively. The as-grown structures subsequently underwent rapid thermal annealing (550 – 900 °C for 1 min) in N2 ambient atmosphere. The structures were investigated using X-ray diffraction, high-resolution transmission electron microscopy along with photoconductive analysis, to explore structural changes and constituent properties. It is observed that the employment of HiPIMS facilitates the formation of SiGe nano-particles (~ 2.1 ± 0.8 nm) in the as-grown structure, and that presence of such nano-particles acts as a seed for heterogeneous nucleation, which upon annealing results in formation of periodically arranged columnar self-assembly of core-shell SiGe nanocrystals. Consequently an increase in photocurrent intensity by more than an order of magnitude was achieved by the annealing. Furthermore, a detailed discussion is provided on strain development within the structures, the consequent interface characteristics and its effect on the photocurrent spectra.

Keywords:  SiGe; SiO2; nanoparticles; TEM; photo-spectra, magnetron sputtering; HiPIMS

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Sultan, M. T.; Teodorescu, V. S.; Guðmundsson, J. T.; Manolescu, A.; Ciurea, M. L.; Svavarsson, H. G. Beilstein Arch. 2019, 201916. doi:10.3762/bxiv.2019.16.v1

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