Regrown/processed AlGaAs interfaces using secondary ion mass spectrometry, cross section transmission electron microscopy (TEM), and reflection high energy electron diffraction have been characterized. Two sets of samples, GaAs/Al 0.4 Ga 0.6 As (with GaAs on top) and Al 0.4 Ga 0.6 As/GaAs (with Al 0.4 Ga 0.6 As on top), are used as starting materials. For the GaAs/Al 0.4 Ga 0.6 As samples that are first exposed to atmosphere, the experiment is performed in an integrated processing system where etching and regrowth chambers are linked together by ultrahigh vacuum transfer modules. The etching process includes electron cyclotron resonance (ECR) hydrogen plasma cleaning of GaAs native oxides, ECR SiCl 4 plasma anisotropic deep etching into Al 0.4 Ga 0.6 As, and an optional, brief Cl 2 chemical etching. Regrowth is carried out using solid-source molecular beam epitaxy (MBE). Despite the in situ processing, significant amounts of C, Si, and O impurities at the 10, 5, and 50×10 12 cm -2 levels exist at the interfaces. However, the impurity level is one order of magnitude smaller than that in air-exposed, ECR plasma etched and MBE regrown Al 0.4 Ga 0.6 As/GaAs of the set 2 samples. As revealed using TEM, isolated small particles (presumably correlated to aluminium oxides) exist at the regrown/processed interface of the set 1 samples, but no other defects such as dislocation are seen. Impurities and defects are mainly caused by the high reactivity of AlGaAs during ECR plasma etching.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)