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Si substrates texturing and vapor-solid-solid Si nanowhiskers growth using pure hydrogen as source gas

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9 Author(s)
Nordmark, H. ; Department of Physics, NTNU, NO-7491 Trondheim, Norway ; Nagayoshi, H. ; Matsumoto, N. ; Nishimura, S.
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Scanning and transmission electron microscopies have been used to study silicon substrate texturing and whisker growth on Si substrates using pure hydrogen source gas in a tungsten hot filament reactor. Substrate texturing, in the nanometer to micrometer range of mono- and as-cut multicrystalline silicon, was observed after deposition of WSi2 particles that acted as a mask for subsequent hydrogen radical etching. Simultaneous Si whisker growth was observed for long residence time of the source gas and low H2 flow rate with high pressure. The whiskers formed via vapor-solid-solid growth, in which the deposited WSi2 particles acted as catalysts for a subsequent metal-induced layer exchange process well below the eutectic temperature. In this process, SiHx species, formed by substrate etching by the H radicals, diffuse through the metal particles. This leads to growth of crystalline Si whiskers via metal-induced solid-phase crystallization. Transmission electron microscopy, electron diffraction, and x-ray energy dispersive spectroscopy were used to study the WSi2 particles and the structure of the Si substrates in detail. It has been established that the whiskers are partly crystalline and partly amorphous, consisting of pure Si with WSi2 particles on their tips as well as sometimes being incorporated into their structure.

Published in:

Journal of Applied Physics  (Volume:105 ,  Issue: 4 )