Electrical Properties of Boron-Doped μc-Si:H Prepared by Reactive Magnetron Sputtering from c-Si Targets


We discuss the preparation and electrical properties of B-doped μc-Si:H thin films prepared by reactive magnetron sputtering in a hydrogen containing ambient. The B-concentration, and hence the dark conductivity, have been varied by controlling the rf power supplied to two sputtering targets, one, of undoped c-Si, and the other of B-doped c-Si. Films deposited from either target alone display dark conductivity activation energies of approximately 0.5 eV due to Fermi level pinning by native donorlike defects and B-doping for samples prepared from the undoped and B-doped targets, respectively. Films deposited by simultaneously sputtering undoped and B-doped targets display activation energies which first increase to approximately 0.7 eV and then decrease as the fraction of power supplied to the B-doped target is increased. For the combination of deposition parameters used, the cross over point between B-compensated, n-type films, and B-doped p-type films occurs for powers of 50 W supplied to the B-doped target and 100 W to the undoped target. B-compensated samples display trends in photoconductive properties essentially identical to results for μc-Si:H samples prepared by remote plasma CVD. However, IR studies indicate that the material shows significant post-deposition oxide formation. TEM studies confirm the existence of a low-density, porous network. Work is underway to optimize the structural aspects of this material.

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We would like to thank T.P. Humphreys and R.J. Nemanich for performing the Raman scattering measurements. This research was supported by NREL under Subcontract XM-9-18141-2.

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Turner, W.A., Williams, M.J., Chen, Y.L. et al. Electrical Properties of Boron-Doped μc-Si:H Prepared by Reactive Magnetron Sputtering from c-Si Targets. MRS Online Proceedings Library 283, 567–572 (1992). https://doi.org/10.1557/PROC-283-567

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