Interdiffusion of Al and Ga in heavily C-doped Al0.3Ga 0.7As/GaAs superlattice (SL) structures has been investigated quantitatively for a variety of ambient and surface encapsulation conditions. High-resolution photoluminescence (PL) at T=1.7 K was employed to evaluate the extent of layer intermixing after 24-h anneals at 825 °C. From the shifts to higher energies of the PL peaks due to n=1 electron-to-heavy hole transitions in the quantum wells of the annealed SLs relative to the position of this peak in the as-grown crystal, approximate Al-Ga interdiffusion coefficients (D Al-Ga) have been determined for different annealing conditions. For all encapsulants studied the interdiffusion in C-doped crystals is accelerated with increasing As4 pressure in the annealing ampoule. This result disagrees with previously observed trends for Group II-doped p-type structures, which have led to the charged point-defect model (Fermi-level effect) of Al-Ga interdiffusion. The Si3N4 cap has provided the most effective surface sealing against ambient-stimulated layer interdiffusion, and yielded DAl-Ga≊1.5-3.9×10-19 cm2/s. The most extensive layer intermixing has occurred for uncapped SL annealed under As-rich ambient (DAl-Ga≊3.3×10-18 cm 2/s). These values are up to ∼40 times greater than those previously reported for nominally undoped AlxGa1-xAs/GaAs SLs, implying that the CAs doping slightly enhances host-atom self-diffusion on the Group III sublattice, but significantly less than predicted by the Fermi-level effect. The discrepancies between the experimental observations and the model, are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5615-5620
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Applied Physics
Issue number11
StatePublished - Dec 1 1990

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)

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