Triple-axis X-ray diffraction of SiC thin films on Si (001)

Silicon carbide is used for blue LEDs, ultrafast high-voltage Schottky diodes, MESFETs and high temperature thyristors for high-power switching. By growing SiC thin films on Si, it can be naturally integrated with the mature Si technology. Growing high quality, defect-free SiC thin films is essential for their applications.

High-resolution triple-axis X-ray diffraction provides a nondestructive, quick, and quantitative measure of the film quality and possible defect density.

In the figure below, both ω and ω/2θ profiles around the (008) Bragg point of a 200nm SiC thin film on a Si (001) substrate measured on the SmartLab diffractometer are shown. By using the triple-axis configuration, consisting of a Ge(220) 4-bounce monochromator and a Ge(220) 2-bounce analyzer, the widths of the SiC reciprocal lattice point along the in-plane and the out-of-plane directions were measured separately. The in-plane width (Δω) typically relates to mosaic spread or misfit dislocation density; whereas, the out-of-plane width (Δ2θ) relates to the variation of lattice constants due to, for example, composition variation. The narrow in-plane and out-of-plane peak width of the sample shown here indicate that the film is of excellent quality.

Residual Stress

The SmartLab is the most novel high-resolution diffractometer available today. Perhaps its most novel feature is the SmartLab Guidance software, which provides the user with an intelligent interface that guides you through the intricacies of each experiment. It is like having an expert standing by your side. Read more about SmartLab...

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