Trench formation around and between self-assembled Ge islands on Si

Denker, Ulrich; Schmidt, Oliver G.; Jin-Philipp, Neng-Yun; Eberl, Karl
June 2001
Applied Physics Letters;6/4/2001, Vol. 78 Issue 23, p3723
Academic Journal
Investigations on near-surface diffusion during the formation of self-assembled Ge islands on Si(001) are presented. We measure the detailed shape of trenches around islands that are formed due to short range, strain enhanced diffusion. It is found that these trenches have anisotropic shape which we explain in terms of the intrinsic anisotropy of the elastic properties for the Si crystal. At high growth temperatures, long-range depletion of the substrate and trench formation between neighboring islands due to strong in-diffusion of Si into the nominally pure Ge islands is observed. A simple diffusion model which predicts trench depths as a function of island distance fits well to our experimentally observed data. Calculated diffusion lengths from this model are comparable to the average island distance on the surface. © 2001 American Institute of Physics.


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