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Preferential Positioning, Stability, and Segregation of Dopants in Hexagonal Si Nanowires

AuthorsAmato, Michele; Ossicini, Stefano; Canadell, Enric ; Rurali, Riccardo
Hexagonal diamond silicon
Density functional theory
Formation energy
Issue Date13-Feb-2019
PublisherAmerican Chemical Society
CitationNano Letters 19(2): 866-876 (2019)
AbstractWe studied the physics of common p- and ntype dopants in hexagonal-diamond Si, a Si polymorph that can be synthesized in nanowire geometry without the need of extreme pressure conditions, by means of first-principles electronic structure calculations and compared our results with those for the well-known case of cubic-diamond nanowires. We showed that (i) as observed in recent experiments, at larger diameters (beyond the quantum confinement regime) p-type dopants prefer the hexagonaldiamond phase with respect to the cubic one as a consequence of the stronger degree of three-fold coordination of the former, while n-type dopants are at a first approximation indifferent to the polytype of the host lattice; (ii) in ultrathin nanowires, because of the lower symmetry with respect to bulk systems and the greater freedom of structural relaxation, the order is reversed and both types of dopant slightly favor substitution at cubic lattice sites; (iii) the difference in formation energies leads, particularly in thicker nanowires, to larger concentration differences in different polytypes, which can be relevant for cubic-hexagonal homojunctions; (iv) ultrasmall diameters exhibit, regardless of the crystal phase, a pronounced surface segregation tendency for p-type dopants. Overall these findings shed light on the role of crystal phase in the doping mechanism at the nanoscale and could have a great potential in view of the recent experimental works on group IV nanowires polytypes.
Publisher version (URL)http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.nanolett.8b04083
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