Interactions of hydrogen with vanadium in crystalline silicon

Jack Mullins, Vladimir Markevich, Matthew Halsall, Anthony Peaker

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    In this work we have investigated interactions of vanadi-um with hydrogen in n- and p-type float zone grown sili-con using deep level transient spectroscopy (DLTS), La-place DLTS, capacitance-voltage, and secondary ion mass spectroscopy measurements (SIMS). Vanadium was introduced into Si wafers by ion implantation with subsequent heat treatments at 800 oC for removing the implantation induced lattice damage. In the DLTS spec-tra of the annealed samples we have observed two deep level states due to interstitial vanadium (Vi) atoms in n-type Si and one in p-type Si. A comparison of concentra-tion profiles of the Vi atoms with those for the total con-centration of V measured by SIMS has shown that at the projected implantation depth the [Vi]/[Vtotal] ratio is less than 0.05 at chemical concentration of vanadium of 1×1015 cm-3, so the majority of V atoms are in electrically inactive states in this region. At lower chemical concen-trations of vanadium, similar values of [Vi] and [Vtotal] are observed. After the treatment of the n-type V-doped samples in a remote hydrogen plasma at room tempera-ture, we have found that the concentration of the Vi at-oms decreases while additional electron traps emerge in the DLTS spectra. A trap with the highest concentration has been attributed to a vanadium-hydrogen complex. In the p-type Si:V samples no new levels have emerged in the DLTS spectra after the H-plasma treatments. It is suggested that in p-type Si:V an interaction of H atoms with the Vi atoms is suppressed because of the Cou-lombic repulsion of positively charged Vi and hydrogen defects. It is argued that no electrically active defects are formed in either the n- or p-type Si:V samples due to possible interactions of hydrogen with electrically inac-tive V-related defects. We present evidence that anneal-ing of the n-type Si:V samples in the temperature range 75-125 °C following the application of hydrogen plasma results in up to 20% decrease in the total concentration of electrically active V-related defects, indicating the for-mation of some electrically inactive V-H complexes. Heat treatments at temperatures above 175 oC have re-sulted in the disappearance of all the V-H complexes and recovery of electrical activity of the Vi atoms.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)2838-2843
    Number of pages6
    JournalPhysica Status Solidi (A) Applications and Materials Science
    Issue number11
    Early online date27 Jul 2016
    Publication statusPublished - 15 Nov 2016


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