A systematic study of the enhancement of Schottky barriers to n-GaAs diodes has been carried out using the Ni-Al binary system. The diodes, Ni2Al3/n-GaAs, Ni2Al3/Ni/n-GaAs, Ni/Al/Ni/n-GaAs and NiAl/Al/Ni/n-GaAs, have been realized by sputter deposition at a base pressure ∼2xl0-7 Torr. A high Schottky barrier height ranging from 0.95 to 0.98 eV (deduced from current-voltage measurements) was observed for all the annealed contacts except for Ni2Al3/n-GaAs contacts. The enhancement of the Schottky barrier height in all the contacts was attributed to the formation of a high Al content (Al,Ga)As layer at the metal/semiconductor interface. The formation of this (Al,Ga)As layer was explained in terms of a regrowth mechanism. In this mechanism, Ni reacts with GaAs initially at low temperatures, forming NixGaAs. The NixGaAs layer is believed to react with the Ni-Al layer to form the (Al,Ga)As layer when subjected to a high temperature annealing. A (200) dark field XTEM image of the annealed contact was used to demonstrate the existence of this (Al,Ga)As phase.