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Proceedings Paper

Two-step epitaxial lateral overgrowth of a-plane GaN by MOCVD
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Paper Abstract

We report on growth and characterization of epitaxial lateral overgrown (ELO) (112-0) a-plane GaN by metalorganic chemical vapor deposition (MOCVD). The ELO samples were grown using a SiO2 striped mask pattern consisting of 4 &mgr;m wide open windows and 10 &mgr;m or 20 &mgr;m wide SiO2 stripes. Different growth rates in Ga- and N-wings along with the wing tilt create a major obstacle for achieving a fully coalesced flat surface in ELO-GaN. To address this problem we have employed a two-step growth method that is able to provide a high height to width aspect ratio in the first growth step followed by enhanced lateral growth in the second step by controlling the growth temperature. Depending on the growth conditions, lateral growth rate of the wings with Ga-polarity were from 2 to 5 times larger than that of the N-polarity wings. We investigated the effects of growth parameters on wing tilt, which was observed to be ~0.25° from the Kikuchi lines using large angle convergent beam electron diffraction (LACBED) and accompanied by some twist (0.09°) between the two opposite wings. Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) results showed that the threading dislocation density in the resulting fully coalesced overgrown GaN was reduced from 4.2×1010 cm-2 in the window area to 1.0×108 cm-2 in the wing area, and that the wing areas contained relatively high density of basal stacking faults, 1.2×104 cm-1. The recombination of carriers/excitons localized at stacking faults was evident in far-field near bandedge photoluminescence (PL) measured at 10 K. Moreover, atomic force microscopy (AFM) measurements revealed two orders of magnitude higher density of surface pits in window than in wing regions, which could be decorating dislocation termination on surface. Time-resolved PL measurements for the a-plane ELO-GaN samples revealed biexponential decays. The recombination times were significantly increased ( &tgr;1 =80 ps and &tgr;2 =250 ps) compared to the standard a-plane epitaxial layers (<45 ps), and ratio of the slow decaying component magnitude to the fast decaying one was more than 1.5, showing considerable reduction of nonradiative centers by lateral overgrowth. In addition, room temperature near-field optical microscopy studies revealed the improved optical quality in the wing regions of the overgrown GaN. As revealed from far-field PL, the band edge luminescence at room temperature was more than two orders of magnitude weaker than the yellow luminescence. Therefore, the overall spectrally integrated near field PL was collected, and its intensity was noticeably stronger in the wing areas with both Ga and N polarity. The much weaker emission at the windows and meeting fronts of the two opposite wings were consistent with the observations of high density of dislocations in the window regions and new defects originating at the meeting boundaries from TEM.

Paper Details

Date Published: 7 February 2007
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 6473, Gallium Nitride Materials and Devices II, 647303 (7 February 2007); doi: 10.1117/12.706826
Show Author Affiliations
X. Ni, Virginia Commonwealth Univ. (United States)
Ü. Özgür, Virginia Commonwealth Univ. (United States)
H. Morkoç, Virginia Commonwealth Univ. (United States)
A. A. Baski, Virginia Commonwealth Univ. (United States)
Z. Liliental-Weber, Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (United States)
H. O. Everitt, Duke Univ. (United States)
U.S. Army Aviation & Missile Research, Development and Engineering Ctr. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6473:
Gallium Nitride Materials and Devices II
Hadis Morkoc; Cole W. Litton, Editor(s)

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