Limited-thickness epitaxy of semiconductors down to room temperature

D. J. Eaglesham, H. J. Gossmann, M. Cerullo, L. N. Pfeiffer, D. Windt

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


We use TEM of thin layers to study the low-temperature limit to semiconductor molecular beam epitaxy (MBE). In Si, Ge/Si and GaAs MBE we show that at low temperature limited-thickness epitaxy occurs: layers initially grow epitaxially, and the amorphous phase forms beyond some epitaxial thickness, hepi. TEM and doping experiments show that the defect density always remains low in these films, and growth on H-terminated Si suggests that in Si, at least, segregation of residual H in the MBE chamber is not responsible: this limited-thickness epitaxy is probably linked to surface increasing roughness. Ge marker layers are used to define the surface morphology in Si(100) growth at low temperature, and TEM measurements confirm a significant increase in surface roughness just before the breakdown of epitaxy. We conclude that increasing surface roughness arising from growth at temperatures where surface diffusion processes are very slow changes the kinetics for nucleation of amorphous zones on the crystalline surface, and is thus responsible for the final breakdown of epitaxy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationInstitute of Physics Conference Series
PublisherPubl by Inst of Physics Publ Ltd
Number of pages4
ISBN (Print)0854984062
StatePublished - 1991
Externally publishedYes
EventProceedings of the Conference on Microscopy of Semiconducting Materials 1991 - Oxford, Engl
Duration: Mar 25 1991Mar 28 1991

Publication series

NameInstitute of Physics Conference Series
ISSN (Print)0373-0751


ConferenceProceedings of the Conference on Microscopy of Semiconducting Materials 1991
CityOxford, Engl

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Physics and Astronomy


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