Inhomogeneous distribution of dislocations in a SiGe graded layer and its influence on surface morphology and misfit dislocations at the interface of strained Si/Si0.8Ge0.2

Yuan, X. L.; Sekiguchi, T.; Niitsuma, J.; Sakuma, Y.; Ito, S.; Ri, S. G.
April 2005
Applied Physics Letters;4/18/2005, Vol. 86 Issue 16, p162102
Academic Journal
To improve the quality of a strained Si layer on a SiGe virtual substrate, the distribution of dislocations in a graded SiGe layer is characterized using electron beam induced current (EBIC). A crosshatch pattern of dark and bright bands running along the two <110> directions is observed in an EBIC image taken with a 25-keV-electron beam at 80 K. These dark and bright EBIC bands are attributed, respectively, to high- and low-density dislocation regions in the graded SiGe layer, as is confirmed by transmission electron microscopy. The effects of such an inhomogeneous dislocation distribution on the surface morphology and the generation of misfit dislocations (MDs) at the interface of strained Si/SiGe are investigated. Comparison between the EBIC image and an atomic force microscope image shows that the high-density dislocation regions are correlated with ridges on the surface topography. A chemical etching image shows that most of the MDs lie along the edges of surface ridges. Possible mechanisms of MD generation at the interface of the strained Si/SiGe are proposed.


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