Spectroscopic characterization of semiconductor nanocrystals

Yerci, Selçuk
Semiconductor nanocrystals are expected to play an important role in the development of new generation of microelectronic and photonic devices such as light emitting diodes and memory elements. Optimization of these devices requires detailed investigations. Various spectroscopic techniques have been developed for material and devices characterization. This study covers the applications of the following techniques for the analysis of nanocrystalline materials: Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR), Raman Spectroscopy, X-Ray Diffraction (XRD) and X-Ray Photoelectron (XPS). Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM) and Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometry (SIMS) are also used as complementary methods. Crystallinity ratio, size, physical and chemical environment of the nanostructures were probed with these methods. Si and Ge nanocrystals were formed into the oxides Al2O3 and SiO2 by ion implantation, magnetron sputtering and laser ablation methods. FTIR and XPS are two methods used to extract information on the surface of the nanocrystals. Raman and XRD are non destructive and easy-to-operate methods used widely to estimate the crystallinity to amorphous ratio and the sizes of the nanocrystals. In this study, the structural variations of SiO2 matrix during the formation of Si nanocrystals were characterized by FTIR. The shift in position and changes in intensity of the Si-O-Si asymmetric stretching band of SiOx was monitored. An indirect metrology method based on FTIR was developed to show the nanocrystal formation. Ge nanocrystals formed in SiO2 matrix were investigated using FTIR, Raman and XRD methods. FTIR spectroscopy showed that Ge atoms segregate completely from the matrix at relatively low temperatures 900 oC. The stress between the Ge nanocrystals and the matrix can vary in samples produced by magnetron sputtering if the production conditions are slightly different. Si and Ge nanocrystals were formed into Al2O3 matrix by ion implantation of Si and Ge ions into sapphire matrix. Raman, XRD, XPS and TEM methods were employed to characterize the formed nanocrystals. XRD is used to estimate the nanocrystal sizes which are in agreement with TEM observations. The stress on nanocrystals was observed by Raman and XRD methods, and a quantitative calculation was employed to the Si nanocrystals using the Raman results. XPS and SIMS depth profiles of the sample implanted with Si, and annealed at 1000 oC were measured. Precipitation of Si atoms with the heat treatment to form the nanocrystals was observed using XPS. The volume fraction of the SiOx shell to the Si core in Si nanocrystals was found to be 7.9 % at projection range of implantation.


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Citation Formats
S. Yerci, “Spectroscopic characterization of semiconductor nanocrystals,” M.S. - Master of Science, Middle East Technical University, 2007.