A new method for vertical growth of silicon nanowire in the vapor-liquid-solid (VLS) process

Y.J. Kim, D. Suh, M.L. Lee, H. Ryu
Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute (ETRI), KR

Keywords: nanowire, silicon, vertical, growth

Summary:

We present a new facile method for vertical growth of the silicon nanowire (Si NW) that obviates the need for SiCl4 in vapor-liquid-solid (VLS) process. The VLS process that involves SiCl4 has two major disadvantages; (1) need for high process temperature ranging from 800 °C to 1000 °C, and possibility of damage to the substrates and the equipment due to HCl produced from the reaction of SiCl4 with H2. By using some chemically modified polymers we were able to produce vertically aligned silicon nanowires without using SiCl4 at low temperature range, below 550 °C. The vertically-grown silicon nanowires are useful building blocks for electronic and photovoltaic devices. This new method for vertical nanowire array that does not the need SiCl4 and that makes possible of using lowered process temperature, would constitute a very impactful leap toward producing high quality silicon nanowires in more efficient process.We are working on fine-tuning the conditions for the PLL pretreatment and process temperature. Considering the benefits of the low process temperature and minimal damage to the equipment and the substrate, this new method for vertical silicon-nanowire is expected to contribute much to the development of various nano-devices for optoelectronic application including photovoltaic devices.