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Schematic of the experimental setup for nanodot growth in oxygen rf plasmas on Si(100) (a), dependence of the maximum surface temperature (measured by infrared thermometry) on treatment time (b), and SEM image of the untreated substrate (c).
SEM images of the untreated (a), treated for 10 s (b), and treated for 30 s (c) Si substrates.
AFM images of the silicon surface before the process (a) and silicon surface with nanodots after 30 s of treatment in oxygen plasmas (b), as well as two surface profiles taken from the untreated substrate shown in panel (a), with the preset nucleation level shown as a straight line (c).
Screenshots of the simulated nanodot patterns after (a) 20, (b) 30, and (c) 50 s after treatment, and the magnified substrate area with all surface hillocks (including small ones located well below the nucleation level) (d). The calculated density of adatoms between the nanodots is visualized by the color gradient. The model takes into account the surface and volume diffusion of oxygen on/in Si, as well as the real sizes and size distributions of surface hillocks imported directly from the AFM images.
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