Correlation of TEM data with confined phonons to determine strain and size of Ge nanocrystals embedded in SixNy matrix

Bahariqushchi R., Gundogdu S., AYDINLI A.

SUPERLATTICES AND MICROSTRUCTURES, vol.111, pp.90-95, 2017 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 111
  • Publication Date: 2017
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.spmi.2017.06.020
  • Page Numbers: pp.90-95


Models that use phonon confinement fail to provide consistent results for nanocrystal sizes in differing dielectric matrices due to varying stress experienced by nanocrystals in different dielectric environments. In cases where direct measurement of stress is difficult, the possibility of stress saturation as a function of size opens up a window for the use of phonon confinement to determine size. We report on a test of this possibility in Ge: SixNy system. Ge nanocrystals (NCs) embedded in silicon nitride matrix have been fabricated using plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD) followed by post annealing in Ar ambient. Nanocrystal size dependence of Raman spectra was studied taking into account associated stress and an improved phonon confinement approach. Our analysis show same stress for NCs which have sizes below 7.0 nm allowing the use of phonon confinement to determine the nanocrystal size. The results are compared with TEM data and good agreement is observed. (C) 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.