Callaghan Innovation Research Papers

Back to Research Papers

TitleEvolution of the local structure in GaN: O thin films grown by ion-assisted deposition with film thickness
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2005
AuthorsAriza, M.J., Koo A., Trodahl H.J., Ruck B.J., Bittar A., Jones D.J., Bonnet B., Rozière J., and Moscovici J.
JournalSurface and Interface Analysis
Pagination273 - 280
Date Published2005
ISSN01422421 (ISSN)
KeywordsAbsorption spectroscopy, Amorphization, Amorphous films, Deposition, Dislocations (crystals), Film growth, Ga-K-edge EXAFS, Gallium nitride, Ion-assisted deposition (IAD), Optical properties, Thin films, Total electron yield XAFS, Transmission electron microscopy, X ray diffraction analysis, X ray spectroscopy, X-ray absorption fine structure (XAFS)
AbstractOptical and optoelectronic properties of gallium nitride strongly depend on the synthesis procedure, which may be related to specific structural characteristics of GaN inherent to each preparation condition. Amorphous and nanocrystalline GaN films have been prepared by ion-assisted deposition (IAD). The films prepared at 10-5 Torr for <50 min have shown exploitable optoelectronic properties, in spite of the high concentration of oxygen of these films (up to 25 at.%). We study here the evolution of the local structure around Ga atoms as the deposition time increases. Five IAD GaN films of thickness ranging between 140 and 450 nm on silicon substrates were analysed by x-ray absorption fine structure (XAFS) at the Ga K-edge. The first and second shells of neighbouring atoms are clearly identified in the radial distribution functions at approximately 1.9 and 3.2 A, respectively. In all of the films, Ga seems to be tetrahedrally coordinated to four nitrogen atoms, some of which may be substituted by oxygen. For deposition times <50 min, analysis of both x-ray adsorption near-edge structure (XANES) and extended x-ray adsorption fine structure (EXAFS) regions indicates that the material is highly amorphous. Above this threshold, a peak corresponding to the first coordination sphere of Ga atoms becomes discernible and increases in intensity for longer deposition times, indicating that the second shell of atoms is now more ordered. The pseudo Debye-Waller factor of the Ga shell is used for monitoring the average degree of amorphization in an ̃100 nm thick top layer, which seems to be related to the film oxygen content. The XAFS results are compatible with a layered distribution of crystallinity, as has been suggested previously for these films. Copyright © 2005 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Back to top