Growth of ScN epitaxial films by plasma-assisted molecular beam epitaxy

Hall, J L and Moram, M A and Sanchez, A and Novikov, S V and Kent, A J and Foxon, C T and Humphreys, C J and Campion, R P


Since c-GaN and ScN have near identical lattice parameters, we have studied the growth of ScN by molecular beam epitaxy, on different surfaces, as a possible buffer layer for improving the quality of c-GaN. Epitaxial growth of ScN on c-GaN(1 0 0), GaAs(1 0 0) and ScAs(1 0 0) surfaces has been demonstrated for the first time. ScN was found to grow in a (1 0 0) orientation on ScAs, whereas on c-GaN and GaAs it grew in a (1 1 1) orientation. Epitaxy of GaN on ScN(1 1 1) results in the hexagonal polytype, while GaN on ScN(1 0 0) produces the cubic polytype. AFM studies show smoother surfaces are attained for c-GaN grown on ScN(1 0 0), in comparison to conventional c-GaN growth on GaAs(1 0 0). This shows that ScN(1 0 0) layers offer the potential to improve the quality of c-GaN(1 0 0).

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Department of Materials
Imperial College London
Royal School of Mines
Exhibition Road
London, SW7 2AZ - UK