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Publication Detail
A luminescence study of silicon-rich silica and rare-earth doped silicon-rich silica
  • Publication Type:
  • Authors:
    Kenyon AJ, Trwoga PF, Pitt CW
  • Publisher:
    Electrochemical Society
  • Publication date:
  • Place of publication:
    Pennington, US
  • Pagination:
    304, 318
  • Published proceedings:
    Proceedings of the Fourth International Symposium on Quantum Confinement: Nanoscale Materials, Devices, and Systems
  • Editors:
    Cahay M,Leburton JP,Lockwood DJ,Bandyopadhyay S
  • ISBN-10:
  • Status:
  • Language:
  • Publisher URL:
Light emission from silicon has long been a goal of the electronics industry, the realisation of which would open up the possibility of true large-scale optoelectronic integration. Current hybrid technologies suffer from processing complexity and lattice mismatch which would be avoided if a suitable silicon-based luminescent material were developed. To this end, there has recently been considerable interest in light emission from new forms of silicon. Research has been primarily concentrated on porous silicon, but there is a growing body of work on related materials such as nanocrystalline silicon and silicon-rich silica. The latter exhibits similar optical properties to porous silicon without the associated problems of stability. We have produced by Plasma Enhanced Chemical Vapour Deposition a number of silicon-rich silica films which contain silicon nanoclusters as-grown of the order of 2 nm diameter. Using photoluminescence spectroscopy, ESR and FTIR studies we have investigated the influence of post-process annealing on the optical and physical properties of the material. We have been able to identify two separate luminescence bands which appear to arise from different mechanisms: defect luminescence and exciton confinement in nanoscale silicon clusters. We have doped samples of silicon-rich silica with erbium ions and have shown that strong luminescence from the ram-earth ion is obtained even when excited away from characteristic absorption bands; the luminescence intensity is largely independent of excitation wavelength below 514 nm. We ascribe this to a carrier-mediated excitation of the rare-earth ions via the silicon microclusters. This is in accordance with recent results in the literature on erbium implanted porous silicon. The very broad absorption of this material opens up the possibility for flashlamp-pumped optoelectronic devices. We also present electroluminescence spectra from simple metal-insulator-silicon test devices which employ silicon-rich silica as the luminescent layer.
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