The effect of elastic constants on the critical thickness of an epilayer is investigated. The results indicate that the self energy of the dislocation is controlled by the soft phase between the epilayer and the substrate, while the interaction energy only depends on the elastic constants of the epilayer. It is easier for a dislocation to be formed if the substrate is softer than the epilayer, and consequently the critical thickness is smaller. On the other hand, a soft epilayer can have a large thickness without any mismatch dislocation.
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Tong, ZY. Elastic Constant Effect on the Critical Thickness of an Epilayer. MRS Online Proceedings Library 356, 325–330 (1994). https://doi.org/10.1557/PROC-356-325