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Reduction of threading dislocation density in SiGe layers on Si (001) using a two-step strain–relaxation procedure

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7 Author(s)
Sakai, Akira ; Department of Crystalline Materials Science, Graduate School of Engineering, Nagoya University, Furo-cho, Chikusa-ku, Nagoya 464-8603, Japan ; Sugimoto, Ken ; Yamamoto, Takeo ; Okada, Masahisa
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A method to obtain high-quality strain–relaxed SiGe buffer layers on Si(001) substrates is presented. In this method, the strain relaxation of the SiGe layer is performed using a two-step procedure. Firstly, a low-temperature-grown SiGe layer, whose surface is covered by a thin Si cap layer, is thermally annealed. At this stage, the strain is incompletely relaxed and an atomically flat surface can be realized. Then, a second SiGe layer is grown on the first layer to achieve further strain relaxation. Transmission electron microscopy has clearly revealed that dislocations are dispersively introduced into the first SiGe/Si substrate interface and thus no pile up of dislocations occurs. The formation of a periodic undulation on the growth surface of the second SiGe layer is the key to inducing a drastic reduction in the threading dislocation density. © 2001 American Institute of Physics.

Published in:

Applied Physics Letters  (Volume:79 ,  Issue: 21 )