Polycrystalline SiGe (poly-SiGe) film growth by reactive thermal CVD with a gaseous mixture of Si2H6 and GeF4 was investigated on various substrates such as Al,Cr, Pt, Si, ITO, ZnO and thermally grown SiO2.
In Ge-rich film growth, SEM observation in the early stage of the film growth revealed that direct nucleation of crystallites took place on the substrates. The nucleation was governed by two different mechanisms: one was a heterogeneous nucleation on the surface and the other was a homogeneous nucleation in the gas phase. In the former case, the selective nucleation was observed at temperatures lower than 400°C on metal substrates and Si, where the activation of adsorbed GeF4 on the surface played a major role for the nuclei formation, leading to the selective film growth.
On the other hand, the direct nucleation did not always take place in Si-rich film growth irrespective of the substrates and depended on the growth rate. In a growth rate of 3.6nm/min, the high crystallinity of poly-Si0.95Ge0.05in a 220nm-thick film was achieved at 450°C due to the no initial deposition of amorphous tissue on SiO2 substrates.