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Template-free fabrication of silicon micropillar/nanowire composite structure by one-step etching

Fan Bai12, Meicheng Li13*, Rui Huang1, Dandan Song1, Bing Jiang1 and Yingfeng Li1

Author Affiliations

1 State Key Laboratory of Alternate Electrical Power System with Renewable Energy Sources, North China Electric Power University, Beijing, 102206, China

2 School of Materials Science and Engineering, Harbin Institute of Technology, Harbin, 150001, China

3 Suzhou Institute, North China Electric Power University, Suzhou, 215123, China

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Nanoscale Research Letters 2012, 7:557  doi:10.1186/1556-276X-7-557

Published: 8 October 2012


A template-free fabrication method for silicon nanostructures, such as silicon micropillar (MP)/nanowire (NW) composite structure is presented. Utilizing an improved metal-assisted electroless etching (MAEE) of silicon in KMnO4/AgNO3/HF solution and silicon composite nanostructure of the long MPs erected in the short NWs arrays were generated on the silicon substrate. The morphology evolution of the MP/NW composite nanostructure and the role of self-growing K2SiF6 particles as the templates during the MAEE process were investigated in detail. Meanwhile, a fabrication mechanism based on the etching of silver nanoparticles (catalyzed) and the masking of K2SiF6 particles is proposed, which gives guidance for fabricating different silicon nanostructures, such as NW and MP arrays. This one-step method provides a simple and cost-effective way to fabricate silicon nanostructures.

Micropillars; Nanowires; Metal-assisted electroless etching; K2SiF6