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Control of Medium Range Order in Amorphous Silicon via Ion and Neutral Bombardment

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  17 March 2011

Jennifer E. Gerbi
Affiliation:
Department of Materials Science and Engineering and Coordinated Science Laboratories, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL 61801
Paul. M. Voyles
Affiliation:
Department of Physics, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL 61801 (currently at Bell Laboratories, Lucent Technologies, Murray Hill, NJ, 07974) NEC Research Institute, Princeton, NJ 08540
Michael M. J. Treacy
Affiliation:
NEC Research Institute, Princeton, NJ 08540
J. Murray Gibson
Affiliation:
Materials Science Division, Argonne National Laboratory, Argonne, IL 60439
Wangchun Chen
Affiliation:
Department of Nuclear, Plasma, and Radiological Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL 61801
Brent J. Heuser
Affiliation:
Department of Nuclear, Plasma, and Radiological Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL 61801
J. R. Abelson
Affiliation:
Department of Materials Science and Engineering and Coordinated Science Laboratories, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL 61801
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Abstract

We have observed the existence of medium range order via fluctuation microscopy in amorphous silicon grown at 230°C. We hypothesize that this structure develops during the highly non-equilibrium growth process; high densities of ordered surface nuclei are produced which are subsequently buried and forced into an unfavorable energy state. These nm sized regions are distorted in the bulk due to strain, but remain topologically crystalline. In this work, we alter the growth energetics both at the surface and sub-surface during magnetron sputter film deposition with two kinds of particle bombardment, respectively: a controllable flux of low-energy (20eV) Ar+ ions, and higher energy (100eV) D vs. H neutrals. With this method, we demonstrate for the first time control over the intensity of this medium-range structural order at a constant substrate temperature as seen primarily with fluctuation electron microscopy, but also Raman scattering, spectroscopic ellipsometry, and SAXS. We suggest that these bombardments can increase adspecie surface mobility or drive local sub-surface restructuring (“kinetic annealing”), thus increasing or decreasing the size, density and/or strength of the ordered regions.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © Materials Research Society 2001

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References

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