Si1-xGex nanowires (NWs) (0.22 ≤ x ≤ 0.78) were synthesized using a vapor-liquid-solid procedure with a Au catalyst. We measured the intrinsic physical, chemical, and electrical properties of the oxidized Si1-xGex NWs using several techniques, including transmission electron microscopy, X-ray photoemission spectroscopy, and optical pump-THz probe spectroscopy. We suggest two distinct oxidation mechanisms depending on the Ge content in the Si1-xGex NWs: (i) when the Ge content is around 0.22, a Au catalytic effect brings about oxidation in both the axial and lateral directions; and (ii) when the Ge content is greater than 0.22, the Au tip is detached from the NW body and does not act as a catalyst, which is a result of the high degree of Ge-atom participation in the oxidation process. Additionally, we measured the photoconductivity decay time distribution for the Si1-xGex NWs before and after oxidation process; the decay time is significantly shortened in oxidized Si1-xGex NWs (0.22 < x), whereas it is maintained for Si-rich Si1-xGex NWs (x ≈ 0.22) as compared to the as-grown Si1-xGex NWs. It indicates that the number of defect states is generated with the formation of defective Ge oxide at the oxide-shell-layer/Si1-xGex-core-NW interface.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This work was partially supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korea government (MSIP) (Grant 2015R1A2A1A01007560) and partially supported by the Korea Research Institute of Standards and Science under the Metrology Research Center project. The authors are grateful for the valuable help in the experiments performed using the fs-THz spectroscopy beam-lines at the Pohang Light Source (PLS).
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Materials Science(all)