Crystal Growth and Design

Importance of As and Ga Balance in Achieving Long GaAs Nanowires by Selective Area Epitaxy

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We report on the selective area growth (SAG) of GaAs nanowires (NWs) by the catalyst-free vapor-solid mechanism. Well-ordered GaAs NWs were grown on GaAs(111)B substrates patterned with a dielectric mask using hydride vapor phase epitaxy (HVPE). GaAs NWs were grown along the ⟨111⟩B direction with perfect hexagonal shape when the hole’s opening diameter in SiNx or SiOx mask was varied from 80 to 340 nm. The impact of growth conditions and the hole size on the NW lengths and growth rates was investigated. A saturation of the NW lengths was observed at high partial pressures of As4, explained by the presence of As trimers on the (111)B surface at the NW top surface. By decreasing As4 partial pressure and decreasing the hole size, high aspect ratio NWs were obtained. The longest and thinnest NWs grew faster than a two-dimensional layer under the same conditions, which strongly suggests that surface diffusion of Ga adatoms from the NW sidewalls to their top contributes to the resulting axial growth rate. These findings were supported by a dedicated model. The study highlights the capability of the HVPE process to grow high aspect ratio GaAs NW arrays with high selectivity.