Electrochemical atomic-layer epitaxy (EC-ALE) is an approach to electrodepositing thin-films of compound semiconductors. It takes advantage of underpotential deposition (UPD), deposition of a surface limited amount (a monolayer or less) of an element at a potential less negative than bulk deposition, to form a thin-film of a compound--one atomic layer at a time. Ideally, the 2-D growth mode should promote epitaxial deposition.
We report the formation of compound Cu2Se, at room temperature by electrochemical atomic layer epitaxy (EC-ALE). Cyclic voltammograms were used to determine the deposition potentials of each element. An automated deposition program was used to form 750 cycles of Cu2Se thin films. Electron probe microanalysis was done to determine the stoichiometry of the thin films. X-ray diffraction of the 200 cycle deposit indicated the presence of polycrystalline Cu2Se. The atomic ratio of Cu/Se in the thin films was found to be 2. Band gap of the thin films were determined by reflection absorption measurements. The band gap of the 200 cycle Cu2Se films was found to be 1.6 eV. X-ray diffraction of 350 and 750 cycle Cu2Se films, indicated the deposits consisted of Cu3Se2 and Cu2Se.