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Scanned Probe Oxidation onp-GaAs(100) Surface with an Atomic Force Microscopy

Sheng-Rui Jian1* and Jenh-Yih Juang2

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Materials Science and Engineering, I-Shou University, Kaohsiung, 840, Taiwan, ROC

2 Department of Electrophysics, National Chiao Tung University, Hsinchu, 300, Taiwan, ROC

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Nanoscale Research Letters 2008, 3:249-254  doi:10.1007/s11671-008-9144-2

Published: 3 July 2008


Locally anodic oxidation has been performed to fabricate the nanoscale oxide structures onp-GaAs(100) surface, by using an atomic force microscopy (AFM) with the conventional and carbon nanotube (CNT)-attached probes. The results can be utilized to fabricate the oxide nanodots under ambient conditions in noncontact mode. To investigate the conversion of GaAs to oxides, micro-Auger analysis was employed to analyze the chemical compositions. The growth kinetics and the associated mechanism of the oxide nanodots were studied under DC voltages. With the CNT-attached probe the initial growth rate of oxide nanodots is in the order of ~300 nm/s, which is ~15 times larger than that obtained by using the conventional one. The oxide nanodots cease to grow practically as the electric field strength is reduced to the threshold value of ~2 × 107 V cm−1. In addition, results indicate that the height of oxide nanodots is significantly enhanced with an AC voltage for both types of probes. The influence of the AC voltages on controlling the dynamics of the AFM-induced nanooxidation is discussed.

Atomic force microscopy; p-GaAs(100); Nanooxidation; Multi-walled carbon nanotube; Auger electron spectroscopy