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Title: Heterogeneous nucleation of pits via step pinning during Si(100) homoepitaxy

Using scanning tunneling microscopy (STM), we investigate oxide-induced growth pits in Si thin films deposited by molecular beam epitaxy. In the transition temperature range from 2D adatom islanding to step-flow growth, systematic controlled air leaks into the growth chamber induce pits in the growth surface. We show that pits are also correlated with oxygen-contaminated flux from Si sublimation sources. From a thermodynamic standpoint, multilayer growth pits are unexpected in relaxed homoepitaxial growth, whereas oxidation is a known cause for step-pinning, roughening, and faceting on elemental surfaces, both with and without growth flux. Not surprisingly, pits are thermodynamically metastable and heal by annealing to recover a smooth periodic step arrangement. STM reveals new details about the pits' atomistic origins and growth dynamics. Here, we give a model for heterogeneous nucleation of pits by preferential adsorption of Å-sized oxide nuclei at intrinsic growth antiphase boundaries, and subsequent step pinning and bunching around the nuclei.
Authors:
 [1] ;  [2] ;  [1] ;  [1] ;  [1] ;  [1] ;  [1]
  1. Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)
  2. Lab. for Physical Sciences, College Park, MD (United States)
Publication Date:
Report Number(s):
SAND-2017-11273J; SAND-2017-6009J
Journal ID: ISSN 1367-2630; 657902; TRN: US1703263
Grant/Contract Number:
AC04-94AL85000
Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
New Journal of Physics
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 19; Journal Issue: 11; Journal ID: ISSN 1367-2630
Publisher:
IOP Publishing
Research Org:
Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
36 MATERIALS SCIENCE; thin film; molecular beam epitaxy; scanning tunneling microscopy; Si(100); oxide; growth pit; defect; impurity
OSTI Identifier:
1406367
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1465800

Yitamben, Esmeralda, Butera, Robert E., Swartzentruber, Brian S., Simonson, Robert J., Misra, Shashank, Carroll, Malcolm S., and Bussmann, Ezra. Heterogeneous nucleation of pits via step pinning during Si(100) homoepitaxy. United States: N. p., Web. doi:10.1088/1367-2630/aa9397.
Yitamben, Esmeralda, Butera, Robert E., Swartzentruber, Brian S., Simonson, Robert J., Misra, Shashank, Carroll, Malcolm S., & Bussmann, Ezra. Heterogeneous nucleation of pits via step pinning during Si(100) homoepitaxy. United States. doi:10.1088/1367-2630/aa9397.
Yitamben, Esmeralda, Butera, Robert E., Swartzentruber, Brian S., Simonson, Robert J., Misra, Shashank, Carroll, Malcolm S., and Bussmann, Ezra. 2017. "Heterogeneous nucleation of pits via step pinning during Si(100) homoepitaxy". United States. doi:10.1088/1367-2630/aa9397. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1406367.
@article{osti_1406367,
title = {Heterogeneous nucleation of pits via step pinning during Si(100) homoepitaxy},
author = {Yitamben, Esmeralda and Butera, Robert E. and Swartzentruber, Brian S. and Simonson, Robert J. and Misra, Shashank and Carroll, Malcolm S. and Bussmann, Ezra},
abstractNote = {Using scanning tunneling microscopy (STM), we investigate oxide-induced growth pits in Si thin films deposited by molecular beam epitaxy. In the transition temperature range from 2D adatom islanding to step-flow growth, systematic controlled air leaks into the growth chamber induce pits in the growth surface. We show that pits are also correlated with oxygen-contaminated flux from Si sublimation sources. From a thermodynamic standpoint, multilayer growth pits are unexpected in relaxed homoepitaxial growth, whereas oxidation is a known cause for step-pinning, roughening, and faceting on elemental surfaces, both with and without growth flux. Not surprisingly, pits are thermodynamically metastable and heal by annealing to recover a smooth periodic step arrangement. STM reveals new details about the pits' atomistic origins and growth dynamics. Here, we give a model for heterogeneous nucleation of pits by preferential adsorption of Å-sized oxide nuclei at intrinsic growth antiphase boundaries, and subsequent step pinning and bunching around the nuclei.},
doi = {10.1088/1367-2630/aa9397},
journal = {New Journal of Physics},
number = 11,
volume = 19,
place = {United States},
year = {2017},
month = {11}
}