Crystallization Behavior of Silicon Quantum Dots in a Silicon Nitride Matrix

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Silicon quantum dot superlattice was fabricated by alternating deposition of silicon rich nitride (SRN) and Si3N4 layers using RF magnetron co-sputtering. Samples were then annealed at temperatures between 800 and 1,100 °C and characterized by grazing incident X-ray diffraction (GIXRD), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), Raman spectroscopy, and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR). GIXRD and Raman analyses show that the formation of silicon quantum dots occurs with annealing above 1,100 °C for at least 60 minutes. As the annealing time increased the crystallization of silicon quantum dots was also increased. TEM images clearly showed SRN/Si3N4 superlattice structure and silicon quantum dots formation in SRN layers after annealing at 1,100 °C for more than 60 minutes. The changes in FTIR transmission spectra observed with annealing condition corresponded to the configuration of Si–N bonds. Crystallization of silicon quantum dots in a silicon nitride matrix started stabilizing after 60 minutes' annealing and approached completion after 120 minutes'. The systematic investigation of silicon quantum dots in a silicon nitride matrix and their properties for solar cell application are presented.


Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: February 1, 2012

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  • Journal for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (JNN) is an international and multidisciplinary peer-reviewed journal with a wide-ranging coverage, consolidating research activities in all areas of nanoscience and nanotechnology into a single and unique reference source. JNN is the first cross-disciplinary journal to publish original full research articles, rapid communications of important new scientific and technological findings, timely state-of-the-art reviews with author's photo and short biography, and current research news encompassing the fundamental and applied research in all disciplines of science, engineering and medicine.
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