Structure and mobility on amorphous silicon surfaces

A. S. Dalton, E. G. Seebauer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The structure and dynamics of amorphous surfaces are poorly understood. The present work develops methods employing classical molecular dynamics (MD) simulations to elucidate these phenomena on amorphous silicon. Careful relaxation of the initial ensemble and taking account of exchange with the bulk yield surface diffusion coefficients in good agreement with experiment. Randomly oriented dimer pairs dominate the surface structure. Diffusion proceeds by several pathways, which all differ in basic character from those typically observed on crystalline silicon. The primary pathways involve single atoms and dimer pairs, which typically move only one or two atomic diameters before reincorporating into the surface. Frequent vertical migration takes place between the first two atomic layers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)140-148
Number of pages9
JournalSurface Science
Issue number1-3
StatePublished - Feb 10 2004


  • Amorphous surfaces
  • Molecular dynamics
  • Silicon
  • Surface diffusion
  • Surface structure, morphology, roughness, and topography

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Materials Chemistry

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Structure and mobility on amorphous silicon surfaces'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this