Transformation of germanium to fluogermanates
Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift, 2010
The surface of a single-crystal germanium wafer was transformed to crystals of germanium fluorides and oxides upon exposure to a vapor of HF and HNO3 chemical mixture. Structure analysis indicates that the transformation results in a germanate polycrystalline layer consisting of germanium oxide and ammonium fluogermanate with preferential crystal growth orientation in aOE (c) 101 > direction. Local vibrational mode analysis confirms the presence of N-H and Ge-F vibrational modes in addition to Ge-O stretching modes. Energy dispersive studies reveal the presence of hexagonal alpha-phase GeO2 crystal clusters and ammonium fluogermanates around these clusters in addition to a surface oxide layer. Electronic band structure as probed by ellipsometry has been associated with the germanium oxide crystals and disorder-induced band tailing effects at the interface of the germanate layer and the bulk Ge wafer. The acid vapor exposure causes Ge surface to emit yellow photoluminescence at room temperature.