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Open Access Nano Express

Low-temperature fabrication of layered self-organized Ge clusters by RF-sputtering

Sara RC Pinto1*, Anabela G Rolo1, Maja Buljan2, Adil Chahboun13, Sigrid Bernstorff4, Nuno P Barradas5, Eduardo Alves5, Reza J Kashtiban6, Ursel Bangert6 and Maria JM Gomes1

Author Affiliations

1 Physics Department, University of Minho, 4710-057 Braga, Portugal

2 Rudjer Boskovic Institute, Bijenicka 54, 10000 Zagreb, Croatia

3 LPS, Physics Department, Faculty of Sciences, BP 1796, Fès, Morocco

4 Sincrotrone Trieste, 34012 Basovizza, Italy

5 ITN, Ion Beam Laboratory, EN10, 2686-953 Sacavém, Portugal

6 Nanostructured Materials Research Group, School of Materials, The University of Manchester, P.O. Box 88, Manchester, M1 7HS, UK

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Nanoscale Research Letters 2011, 6:341  doi:10.1186/1556-276X-6-341

Published: 14 April 2011


In this article, we present an investigation of (Ge + SiO2)/SiO2 multilayers deposited by magnetron sputtering and subsequently annealed at different temperatures. The structural properties were investigated by transmission electron microscopy, grazing incidence small angles X-ray scattering, Rutherford backscattering spectrometry, Raman, and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopies. We show a formation of self-assembled Ge clusters during the deposition at 250°C. The clusters are ordered in a three-dimensional lattice, and they have very small sizes (about 3 nm) and narrow size distribution. The crystallization of the clusters was achieved at annealing temperature of 700°C.