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Plasma Enhanced Gas Source Molecular Beam Epitaxy Deposition of High Quality GaN

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Annual letter rept. for period ending FY90, 1 Oct 1989-30 Sep 1990

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GaN is a III-V semiconductor with enormous optical device potential in the near ultraviolet region, a band which has been relatively inaccessible to semiconductor technology. High quality GaN, along with its A1N and InN alloys, would make feasible the production of optically active devices ranging from the visible out to the approximately 6 eV band gap of A1N. Along with its potential benefits come the challenges of this material system. Researchers in the past have been plagued by the inertness of nitrogen which causes GaN films to have a high n-type background carrier concentration resulting from nitrogen vacancies. The goal is to apply electron cyclotron resonance plasma and molecular beam epitaxy technology towards the GaN problem to obtain device quality semiconductor material. With the growth of high quality cubic GaN this past year, our program has defined itself into two main objectives. Further optimization of the GaN deposition to obtain material of the highest optical and electronic quality will be necessary. Parallel efforts will be undertaken in the related A1N and InN systems. The ability to grow each material will allow these materials to be combined into heterostructure devices analogous to those common in other compound semiconductor systems. A second avenue of activity which can be explored in parallel with the device work will be a cataloging of the properties of the entirely new cubic phases of GaN, InN and A1N. Cubic InN and A1N have never to our knowledge been produced in a laboratory. Comparison of the physical properties of these materials with the established properties of the wurtzite phases would yield interesting insights into the role of crystal structure and its influence on the solid state.

Subject Categories:

  • Manufacturing and Industrial Engineering and Control of Production Systems
  • Solid State Physics

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