Structural and electrical properties of metastable defects in hydrogenated amorphous silicon

J. Melskens, A. Schnegg, Amgalanbaatar Baldansuren, K. Lips, M. P. Plokker, S. W H Eijt, H. Schut, M. Fischer, M. Zeman, A. H M Smets

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    The structural and electrical properties of metastable defects in various types of hydrogenated amorphous silicon have been studied using a powerful combination of continuous wave electron-paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy, electron spin echo (ESE) decay measurements, and Doppler broadening positron annihilation spectroscopy. The observed dependence of the paramagnetic defect density on the Doppler S parameter indicates that porous, nanosized void-rich materials exhibit higher spin densities, while dense, divacancy-dominated materials show smaller spin densities. However, after light soaking more similar spin densities are observed, indicating a long-term defect creation process in the Staebler-Wronski effect that does not depend on the a-Si:H nanostructure. From ESE decays it appears that there are fast and slowly relaxing defect types, which are linked to various defect configurations in small and large open volume deficiencies. A nanoscopic model for the creation of light-induced defects in the a-Si:H nanostructure is proposed.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number245207
    JournalPhysical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics
    Issue number24
    Publication statusPublished - 11 Jun 2015


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