Effects of Impurities on the Kinetics of Nucleation and Growth in Amorphous Silicon


The effects of intentionally introduced impurities on the crystallization time, nucleation rate and crystallite growth velocity during solid phase random crystallization of amorphous Si thin films have been determined. Films deposited in UHV onto oxidized Si wafers were subjected to multiple energy ion implantation to introduce uniform distributions of P, B, As, O or F at 0.1–1.0 at.%. Crystallization times and growth velocities were determined over the temperature range 650 to 850°C from time-resolved reflectivity measurements, and nucleation rates were determined from these data using a classical, steady state nucleation and growth model. Strong impurity effects are observed: P, B and As all decrease the nucleation rate but accelerate the growth of crystallites, whereas both 0 and F retard growth while enhancing nucleation. The largest effects are for P, which reduces the nucleation rate more than 100 times at 1% concentration, and F, which increases the rate by roughly the same amount.

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Roth, J.A., Olson, G.L. Effects of Impurities on the Kinetics of Nucleation and Growth in Amorphous Silicon. MRS Online Proceedings Library 74, 319 (1986). https://doi.org/10.1557/PROC-74-319

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