Published in Mat. Res. Soc. Symp. Proc. Vol. 722, K1.3.1 (2002).

Growth of GaN on porous SiC substrates by plasma-assisted molecular beam epitaxy

C. K. Inoki (a), T. S. Kuan (a), C. D. Lee (b), Ashutosh Sagar (b), and R. M. Feenstra (b)
(a)Department of Physics, University at Albany, SUNY, Albany, NY 12222
(b)Department of Physics, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA 15213


We have explored the growth of GaN on porous SiC substrates by plasma-assisted molecular beam epitaxy. The porous 4H- and 6H-SiC(0001) substrates used in this study contain 10 to 100-nm sized pores and a thin skin layer at the surface. This skin layer was partially removed prior to the growth by H-etching. Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) observations indicate that the epitaxial GaN growth initiates from the surface areas between pores, and the exposed surface pores tend to extend into GaN as open tubes and trap Ga droplets. Plan-view TEM observations indicate that the GaN layers grown on porous substrates contain fewer dislocations than layers grown on non-porous substrates by roughly a factor of two. The GaN layers grown on a porous SiC substrate were also found to be mechanically more relaxed than those grown on non-porous substrates; electron diffraction patterns indicate that the former are free of misfit strain or are even in tension after cooling to room temperature.

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