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General features of GaN-related materials

Winter 2014 Volume 30, No. 1
01-06
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Katsuhiko Inaba

In modern society where our daily environment is supported by various electronic devices, it is critical to pursue opto-electronic or power-electronic devices with less environment impact and with higher efficiency of energy conversion to ensure a sustainable society. GaN (gallium nitride) and related materials have been a focus of attention for the issue of sustainability.

Rigaku has been receiving a large number of questions concerning characterization techniques of GaN and related materials. Rigaku’s investigation led to the conclusion that there exist specific difficulties inherent in the characterization of GaN related materials. Some of them originate from the uniqueness of the crystallographic features of GaN, and some of them are inherent to the heteroepitaxial growth of GaN films with huge lattice mismatches.

These findings were a motivation to produce a special article for the Rigaku Journal to review and highlight the topics in the characterization techniques of GaN-related materials, that show promise for optoelectronic and power electronic applications. In this article, general features of the crystallographic nature of GaN-based materials are discussed. Recent topics concerning XRD characterization techniques are the subject of the next article.