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Title: Indirect-to-direct band gap transition in relaxed and strained Ge{sub 1−x−y}Si{sub x}Sn{sub y} ternary alloys

Sn-containing group IV semiconductors create the possibility to independently control strain and band gap thus providing a wealth of opportunities to develop an entirely new class of low dimensional systems, heterostructures, and silicon-compatible electronic and optoelectronic devices. With this perspective, this work presents a detailed investigation of the band structure of strained and relaxed Ge{sub 1−x−y}Si{sub x}Sn{sub y} ternary alloys using a semi-empirical second nearest neighbors tight binding method. This method is based on an accurate evaluation of the deformation potential constants of Ge, Si, and α-Sn using a stochastic Monte-Carlo approach as well as a gradient based optimization method. Moreover, a new and efficient differential evolution approach is also developed to accurately reproduce the experimental effective masses and band gaps. Based on this, we elucidated the influence of lattice disorder, strain, and composition on Ge{sub 1−x−y}Si{sub x}Sn{sub y} band gap energy and directness. For 0 ≤ x ≤ 0.4 and 0 ≤ y ≤ 0.2, we found that tensile strain lowers the critical content of Sn needed to achieve a direct band gap semiconductor with the corresponding band gap energies below 0.76 eV. This upper limit decreases to 0.43 eV for direct gap, fully relaxed ternary alloys. The obtained transition to direct band gap is given by y > 0.605 × x + 0.077 andmore » y > 1.364 × x + 0.107 for epitaxially strained and fully relaxed alloys, respectively. The effects of strain, at a fixed composition, on band gap directness were also investigated and discussed.« less
Authors:
;  [1]
  1. Department of Engineering Physics, École Polytechnique de Montréal, Montréal, C.P. 6079, Succ. Centre-Ville, Montréal, Québec H3C 3A7 (Canada)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22314608
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Journal of Applied Physics; Journal Volume: 116; Journal Issue: 6; Other Information: (c) 2014 AIP Publishing LLC; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
71 CLASSICAL AND QUANTUM MECHANICS, GENERAL PHYSICS; ALLOYS; EPITAXY; MONTE CARLO METHOD; OPTIMIZATION; SEMICONDUCTOR MATERIALS; SILICON; STRAINS; TERNARY ALLOY SYSTEMS