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In-situ TEM Observation of Formation-Retraction-Fracture Experiment of Liquid-Like Silicon Nanocontact

  • Tadashi Ishida (a1), Kuniyuki Kakushima (a1) (a2) and Hiroyuki Fujita (a1)

Abstract

We have examined the change of mechanical characteristics of silicon nanocontacts with and without the pre-treatment by flowing current through the contact. The silicon nanocontact formed between silicon tips by a mechanical contact was quickly deformed during its tensile test under a transmission electron microscope, after applying over 100 μA at a high bias voltage around 15 V between tips for a short duration. In the tensile experiment, the diameter of the nanocontact easily decreased from the initial diameter of 98 nm to 30 nm and the length increased from 11 nm to 66 nm. At 30 nm in diameter, it was suddenly fractured without further elongation and became round tips with smooth surfaces. According to the close observation, the silicon nanocontact seemed amorphous. In the retraction process of the silicon nanocontact, steps moved along the surface from the neck of the nanocontact to the tip side at the speed of 7.0 nm/s. Nano-scaled round step propagations were repeated from the neck to the tip. The step propagation caused the fast thinning of the nanocontact. On the other hand, the silicon nanocontact formed at 1 V in bias voltage was gradually thinned from 42.5 nm to 1.6 nm in diameter and elongated from 2.9 nm to 61.9 nm in length. From the comparison of silicon nanocontacts with and without the pre-treatment, the silicon nanocontact after flowing substantial current showed quick deformation and had different mechanical characteristics from the silicon nanocontact without the pre-treatment.

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Keywords

In-situ TEM Observation of Formation-Retraction-Fracture Experiment of Liquid-Like Silicon Nanocontact

  • Tadashi Ishida (a1), Kuniyuki Kakushima (a1) (a2) and Hiroyuki Fujita (a1)

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