Nano Archive

Nanoscratch Characterization of GaN Epilayers on c- and a-Axis Sapphire Substrates

Lin, Meng-Hung and Wen, Hua-Chiang and Jeng, Yeau-Ren and Chou, Chang-Pin (2010) Nanoscratch Characterization of GaN Epilayers on c- and a-Axis Sapphire Substrates. Nanoscale Research Letters, 5 (11). pp. 1812-1816.

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Abstract

In this study, we used metal organic chemical vapor deposition to form gallium nitride (GaN) epilayers on c- and a-axis sapphire substrates and then used the nanoscratch technique and atomic force microscopy (AFM) to determine the nanotribological behavior and deformation characteristics of the GaN epilayers, respectively. The AFM morphological studies revealed that pile-up phenomena occurred on both sides of the scratches formed on the GaN epilayers. It is suggested that cracking dominates in the case of GaN epilayers while ploughing during the process of scratching; the appearances of the scratched surfaces were significantly different for the GaN epilayers on the c- and a-axis sapphire substrates. In addition, compared to the c-axis substrate, we obtained higher values of the coefficient of friction (mu) and deeper penetration of the scratches on the GaN a-axis sapphire sample when we set the ramped force at 4,000 mu N. This discrepancy suggests that GaN epilayers grown on c-axis sapphire have higher shear resistances than those formed on a-axis sapphire. The occurrence of pile-up events indicates that the generation and motion of individual dislocation, which we measured under the sites of critical brittle transitions of the scratch track, resulted in ductile and/or brittle properties as a result of the deformed and strain-hardened lattice structure.

Item Type:Article
Subjects:Material Science > Nanochemistry
ID Code:9828
Deposited By:CSMNT
Deposited On:14 Jan 2011 07:58
Last Modified:14 Jan 2011 07:58

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