Hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) is one of the most technologically important semiconductors. The challenge in producing it from SiH 4 precursor is to overcome a significant kinetic barrier to decomposition at a low enough temperature to allow for hydrogen incorporation into a deposited film. The use of high precursor concentrations is one possible means to increase reaction rates at low enough temperatures, but in conventional reactors such an approach produces large numbers of homogeneously nucleated particles in the gas phase, rather than the desired heterogeneous deposition on a surface. We report that deposition in confined micro-/nanoreactors overcomes this difficulty, allowing for the use of silane concentrations many orders of magnitude higher than conventionally employed while still realizing well-developed films. a-Si:H micro-/nanowires can be deposited in this way in extreme aspect ratio, small-diameter optical fiber capillary templates. The semiconductor materials deposited have ∼0.5 atom% hydrogen with passivated dangling bonds and good electronic properties. They should be suitable for a wide range of photonic and electronic applications such as nonlinear optical fibers and solar cells.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Colloid and Surface Chemistry