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Damage and microstructure evolution in GaN under Au ion irradiation

Abstract : Damage and microstructure evolution in gallium nitride (GaN) under Au(+) ion irradiation has been investigated using complementary electron microscopy, secondary ion mass spectrometry and ion-beam analysis techniques. Epitaxially-grown GaN layers (2 mu m thick) have been irradiated by 2.0 MeV Au ions to 1.0 x 10(15) and 1.4 x 10(15) cm(-2) at 155 K and to 7.3 x 10(15) cm(-2) at 200 K. The irradiation-induced damage has been analysed by Rutherford backscattering spectroscopy in a channelling direction (RBS/C). For a better determination of the ion-induced disorder profile, an iterative procedure and a Monte Carlo code (McChasy) are combined to analyse the ion channelling spectra. With increasing irradiation dose, separated amorphous layers develop from the sample surface and near the damage peak region. Formation of large nitrogen bubbles with sizes up to 70 nm is observed in the buried amorphous layer, while the surface layer contains small bubbles with a diameter of a few nanometres due to significant nitrogen loss from the surface. Volume expansion from 3% to 25% in the irradiated region is suggested by cross-sectional transmission electron microscope and RBS/C measurement. The anomalous shape of the Au distributions under three irradiations indicates out-diffusion of Au towards the sample surface. The results from the complementary techniques suggest that nitrogen is retained in the damaged GaN where the crystallinity is preserved. Once the amorphous state is reached in the surface region, GaN starts to decompose and nitrogen escapes from the surface. Furthermore, experimental results show considerable errors in both the disorder profile and the ion range predicted by the Stopping and Range of Ions in Matter code, indicating a significant overestimation of electronic stopping powers of Au ions in GaN.
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Contributor : Christine Hadrossek <>
Submitted on : Wednesday, July 20, 2011 - 2:43:50 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, September 16, 2020 - 4:07:35 PM

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Y.W. Zhang, M. Ishimaru, J. Jagielski, M.W. Zhang, Z.H. Zhu, et al.. Damage and microstructure evolution in GaN under Au ion irradiation. Journal of Physics D: Applied Physics, IOP Publishing, 2010, 43, pp.085303. ⟨10.1088/0022-3727/43/8/085303⟩. ⟨in2p3-00609906⟩



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