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Title: Vapor-liquid-solid epitaxial growth of Si1-xGex alloy nanowires. Composition dependence on precursor reactivity and morphology control for vertical forests

The growth of high-density group IV alloy nanowire forests is critical for exploiting their unique functionalities in many applications. Here, the compositional dependence on precursor reactivity and optimized conditions for vertical growth are studied for Si1- x Ge x alloy nanowires grown by the vapor-liquid-solid method. The nanowire composition versus gas partial-pressure ratio for germane-silane and germane-disilane precursor combinations is obtained at 350°C over a wide composition range (0.05 ≤ x ≤ 0.98) and a generalized model to predict composition for alloy nanowires is developed based on the relative precursor partial pressures and reactivity ratio. In combination with germane, silane provides more precise compositional control at high Ge concentrations (x > 0.7), whereas disilane greatly increases the Si concentration for a given gas ratio and enables more precise alloy compositional control at small Ge concentrations (x < 0.3). Vertically oriented, non-kinking nanowire forest growth on Si (111) substrates is then discussed for silane/germane over a wide range of compositions, with temperature and precursor partial pressure optimized by monitoring the nanowire growth front using in-situ optical reflectance. For high Ge compositions (x ≈ 0.9), a “two-step” growth approach with nucleation at higher temperatures results in nanowires with high-density and uniform verticalmore » orientation. Furthermore, increasing Si content (x ≈ 0.8), the optimal growth window is shifted to higher temperatures, which minimizes nanowire kinking morphologies. For Si-rich Si1- x Ge x alloys (x ≈ 0.25), vertical nanowire growth is enhanced by single-step, higher-temperature growth at reduced pressures.« less
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  1. Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Report Number(s):
Journal ID: ISSN 0021-8979; JAPIAU
Grant/Contract Number:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Journal of Applied Physics
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 118; Journal Issue: 1; Journal ID: ISSN 0021-8979
American Institute of Physics (AIP)
Research Org:
Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
Country of Publication:
United States
36 MATERIALS SCIENCE; 77 NANOSCIENCE AND NANOTECHNOLOGY nanowire; silicon; germanium; synthesis