Hydrogen plasma treatments for passivation of amorphous-crystalline silicon-heterojunctions on surfaces promoting epitaxy

Mews, Mathias; Schulze, Tim F.; Mingirulli, Nicola; Korte, Lars
March 2013
Applied Physics Letters;3/25/2013, Vol. 102 Issue 12, p122106
Academic Journal
The impact of post-deposition hydrogen plasma treatment (HPT) on passivation in amorphous/crystalline silicon (a-Si:H/c-Si) interfaces is investigated. Combining low temperature a-Si:H deposition and successive HPT, a high minority carrier lifetime >8 ms is achieved on c-Si <100>, which is otherwise prone to epitaxial growth and thus inferior passivation. It is shown that the passivation improvement stems from diffusion of hydrogen atoms to the heterointerface and subsequent dangling bond passivation. Concomitantly, the a-Si:H hydrogen density increases, leading to band gap widening and void formation, while the film disorder is not increased. Thus, HPT allows for a-Si:H band gap and a-Si:H/c-Si band offset engineering.


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