Structural Properties of Hot Wire a-Si:H Films Deposited at Rates in Excess of 100 A/s

A. H. Mahan, Y. Xu, D. L. Williamson, W. Beyer, J. D. Perkins, M. Vanecek, L. M. Gedvilas, B. P. Nelson

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The structure of a-Si:H, deposited at rates in excess of 100 Å/s by the hot wire chemical vapor deposition technique, has been examined by x-ray diffraction (XRD), Raman spectroscopy, H evolution, and small-angle x-ray scattering (SAXS). The films examined in this study were chosen to have roughly the same bonded H content CH as probed by infrared spectroscopy. As the film deposition rate Rd is increased from 5 to > 140 Å/s, we find that the short range order (from Raman), the medium range order (from XRD), and the peak position of the H evolution peak are invariant with respect to deposition rate, and exhibit structure consistent with a state-of-the-art, compact a-Si:H material deposited at low deposition rates. The only exception to this behavior is the SAXS signal, which increases by a factor of ∼100 over that for our best, low H content films deposited at ∼5 Å/s. We discuss the invariance of the short and medium range order in terms of growth models available in the literature, and relate changes in the film electronic structure (Urbach edge, as-grown defect density) to the increase in the SAXS signals. We also note the invariance of the saturated defect density versus Rd, measured after light soaking, and discuss possible reasons why the increase in the microvoid density apparently does not play a role in the Staebler-Wronski effect for this type of material.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)5038-5047
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Applied Physics
Issue number10
StatePublished - 15 Nov 2001

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/JA-520-31843


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