Metallization and incomplete melting of a semiconductor surface at high temperature

Noboru Takeuchi, Annabella Selloni, E. Tosatti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

78 Scopus citations


We present a first microscopic study of the state of a semiconductor surface, clean Ge(111), close to the bulk melting temperature. Both electronic states and ionic motion are fully treated via first-principles molecular dynamics. Results indicate a clear dynamical disordering, confined, however, to the first atomic bilayer. This region acquires a liquidlike diffusion, and is metallic. Lack of melting of the second and deeper bilayers, found to be in good quantitative agreement with recent x-ray data, indicates an incomplete wetting of the semiconducting solid by its own metallic melt. Previously conflicting data on Ge(111) are also reconciled within this picture.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2227-2230
Number of pages4
JournalPhysical review letters
Issue number14
StatePublished - 1994

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Physics and Astronomy


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