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A computational ab initio study of surface diffusion of sulfur on the CdTe (111) surface
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In order to discern the formation of epitaxial
growth of CdS shell over CdTe nanocrystals, kinetics related to the initial stages of the growth of CdS on CdTe is investigated using ab-initio methods. We report diffusion of sulfur adatom on the CdTe (111) A-type (Cd-terminated) and B-type (Te-terminated) surfaces within the density functional theory (DFT). The barriers are computed by applying the climbing Nudge Elastic Band (c-NEB) method. From the results surface hopping emerges as the major mode of diffusion. In addition, there is a distinct contribution from kick-out type diffusion in which a CdTe
surface atom is kicked out from its position and is replaced by the diffusing sulfur atom. Also, surface
vacancy substitution contributes to the concomitant dynamics. There are sites on the B- type surface that are competitively close in terms of the binding energy to the lowest energy site of epitaxy on the surface. The kick-out process is more likely for B-type surface where a Te atom of the surface is displaced by a sulfur adatom. Further, on the B-type surface, subsurface migration of sulfur is indicated. Furthermore, the binding energies of S on CdTe reveal that on the A-type surface,
epitaxial sites provide relatively higher binding energies and barriers than on B-type.
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