Raman study on zinc-blende single InAs nanowire grown on Si (111) substrate
© Li et al.; licensee Springer. 2013
Received: 26 October 2012
Accepted: 2 January 2013
Published: 14 January 2013
Skip to main content
© Li et al.; licensee Springer. 2013
Received: 26 October 2012
Accepted: 2 January 2013
Published: 14 January 2013
We report polarized Raman scattering studies on single InAs nanowires (NWs). The NWs were grown by metalorganic chemical vapor deposition on Si (111) substrates without external catalyst and showed a zinc-blende crystal structure. The single NWs were studied for different polarization excitation of the incident laser beam relative to the NW axis. The transverse optical (TO) mode exhibits maximum intensity when both the incident and analyzed light polarizations are parallel to the NW axis. The TO mode of InAs NWs is found to act like a nearly perfect dipole antenna, which can be attributed to the one-dimensional NW geometry and Raman selection rules.
Semiconductor nanowires (NWs) have been intensively studied in the last decade due to their novel physical properties and potential applications in high-performance devices, such as field-effect transistors, lasers, photodetectors, and photovoltaic devices [1–5]. Among them, InAs NWs possess excellent electron transport properties such as high bulk mobility, small effective mass, and low ohmic contact resistivity, which can be used for making high-performance electronic devices such as high-mobility transistors [6–8]. For their device applications, it is important to understand the physical properties of these InAs NWs, including phonon scattering information. Although NWs with low defect density have been reported, many NW material systems suffer from various types of planar defects, predominantly rotational twins and twinning superlattices, alternating zinc-blende (ZB)/wurtzite polytypes, as well as point defects [9–12]. Raman scattering, a nondestructive contactless characterization technique, provides an effective approach to probe phonon properties. Combined with advanced confocal microscopy, Raman scattering can be well used to investigate the phonon properties of single NWs with a spatial resolution of roughly half the excitation wavelength. Phonon energies, scattering cross sections, and symmetry properties of optical phonons are determined by analyzing inelastically scattered light, providing information about crystal structure and composition, electronic properties, and electron–phonon and phonon-phonon interactions . In the meantime, Raman scattering in NWs is expected to be different from that in their bulk materials due to their one-dimensional geometry , where the polarized excitation will show a significant effect on phonon modes. Indeed, some previous studies on NWs do show an obvious polarization effect [15–20]. Though some works [21, 22] have reported on the Raman spectra of InAs NW assemblies, little attention has been devoted to the Raman scattering in single InAs NWs [23, 24], especially the effect of excitation polarization on phonon vibration. In this work, we present a Raman study on single zinc-blende InAs NWs. The effect of excitation polarization on the phonon properties of single InAs NWs is also investigated in detail.
where R is the Raman tensor and and are the polarization of the incident radiation and the scattered radiation, respectively. The zone-center optical phonon in the zinc-blende structure is split into a doubly degenerate transverse optical (TO) mode and a longitudinal optical (LO) mode, and the Raman tensor elements are different for the TO and LO modes. As calculated, the TO mode can be observed in backscattering from the (110) and (111) surfaces, while the LO mode is allowed from the (100) and (111) surfaces .
In order to calculate the polar patterns of Is for NWs, one has to take into account the additional degree of freedom associated with the rotation of θ around the NW axis since it can influence the polar patterns of the optical modes. Based on , this angular dependence is a clear signature of the presence of zinc-blende TO modes and can be used for their assignation.
Raman measurements were performed in a backscattering configuration on single InAs NWs and from the (110) surface of a bulk InAs single crystal as reference. The general measurement geometry for a single NW is shown in Figure 1. The laboratory coordinate system x, y, z is chosen according to the NW geometry and the basis of the NW crystal coordinate system: (). Based on the calculated selection rules in , the TO phonon mode can be observed in the backscattering from the (110) and (111) InAs surfaces, while the LO phonon mode can be observed from the (100) and (111) InAs surfaces. The Raman spectra of the single InAs NW and bulk InAs obtained are shown in Figure 4b, which are measured under the configuration . The coordinates y and z are chosen perpendicular and parallel to the NW growth axis, respectively. Incident and scattered light polarizations were selected parallel to the NW growth axis. The Raman spectra of both nanowire and bulk InAs have been normalized with respect to the intensity of the TO phonon mode of bulk InAs for easy comparison. For bulk InAs (110), the TO mode is found at 217.2 cm−1. The Raman scattering spectrum of InAs NWs is composed mainly by the TO mode at 215.8 cm−1, slightly lower than that for the reference bulk InAs (110) sample. In addition, the LO mode of the single NW is also visible at around 236 cm−1, the appearance of which might be caused by the disorder and an imperfect scattering geometry . In addition, the TO mode of InAs NWs exhibits a downshift of about 2 to 3 cm−1 compared to the TO mode of bulk ZB InAs. Along with the downshift, a remarkable increase of the full width at half maximum to 14 cm−1 is observed. It should be mentioned that the downshift of the TO mode was also observed in the Raman measurements on the as-grown NW ensemble samples. Generally, there are two factors which might induce the downward shift of phonon mode frequency and the broadening of the Raman peak. One is laser heating effect. As reported before [27–30], local heating might also cause the downshift of phonon mode frequency and the broadening of phonon peak. To reduce the laser heating effect, we use the lowest laser power and the monodisperse wires were placed on high thermal conductivity HOPG to avoid substrate effects. An excitation power-dependent Raman measurement was performed on the single NWs, and no shifting of the phonon peak was observed when the excitation power is 0.05 mW (data not shown here), which may be due to high-thermal conductivity substrate (HOPG) and low nanowire coverage over the substrate . Thus, this heating effect can be lowered in our measurements; the other is quantum confinement effect. It is well demonstrated before in theory and experiments that for small-sized crystals like quantum wires, nanowires, etc., the quantum confinement effect will be very obvious and result in the downward frequency shift and linewidth broadening of the TO and LO phonon modes. Such change of phonon mode frequency and linewidth is mainly due to the relaxation of the q = 0 selection rule in the Raman scattering [14, 15, 22, 29–33].
For better understanding of phonon properties in single NWs, excitation polarization-dependent Raman measurements were also performed on the single NWs. Figure 4c shows the Raman spectra of single NWs measured under four main polarization configurations (, , , and ). It is observed that the intensity of the TO mode measured with parallel configuration, i.e., and , when the incident and scattered light polarizations are parallel to each other, is much stronger than that with perpendicular configuration, and the intensity measured under the configuration is much stronger than that under the configuration. This indicates that the highest scattering intensity occurs when both the incident and analyzed light linear polarization are parallel to the NW growth axis. These results observed here are in accordance with those of ZB GaAs NWs reported in , which is mainly caused by the selection rules of the crystal. The excitation polarization-dependent Raman scattering measurements were performed by rotating the half-wave plate in 10° ± 2° increments and thus changing the angle, ϕ, between the electric vector of the incident light and the long axis of the NW. Figure 4d shows the polar scan of the intensity of the TO phonon mode of single InAs NWs as a function of the angle measured under two scattering configurations and , where . As shown in Figure 4d, for the configuration, the maximum intensity occurs at 5° and 175°, while the minimum intensity occurs at 85° and 265°. Some experimental points slightly deviate from the trend, which might be caused by the experimental artifact. For the configuration, there is a weakly preferential value of ϕ giving a maximum scattering intensity (maximum intensity is around 75° and minimum intensity is around 340°). It is noted that the maximum intensity measured under the polarization is around seven times that measured under the polarization, which indicates that the Raman scattering under the configuration is much more efficient than that under the configuration. This particular distribution of the maximum/minimum Raman peak intensity in the polar scan, as shown in Figure 4d, agrees well with that obtained with theoretical calculation for ZB InAs nanowires . This further confirms that the InAs NWs studied here is mainly composed of ZB phase, which accords with the HRTEM results discussed before [16, 23]. The TO mode of InAs NWs is found to act like a nearly perfect dipole antenna. The same behavior has been found in the other one-dimensional systems, such as SWNTs , 20-nm WS2 nanotubes , GaP NWs , and GaAs NWs . The origin of this effect has been attributed to the scattering of the electromagnetic field from a dielectric cylinder of nanoscale dimensions . Furthermore, it is observed that the light is preferentially absorbed when the incident light is polarized along the nanowire axis . These theories about Raman selection rules and the one-dimensional geometry of the NW may be used to explain our experimental data.
Raman scattering experiments have been performed on single InAs NWs. In the single NW spectra, a striking TO mode is observed at 215.8 cm−1, slightly lower than that of the reference bulk InAs (110) sample. This downward shift of the phonon frequency is mainly caused by defects or disorders that existed in the NW. The excitation polarization-dependent Raman measurements indicate that the TO phonon mode in the NW presents the highest scattering efficiency when both the incident and analyzed polarization are parallel to the NW growth axis. The TO mode of InAs NWs is found to act like a nearly perfect dipole antenna. This is a combined consequence of both the selection rules and the one-dimensional geometry of the NW.
High-resolution transmission electron microscopy
Metalorganic chemical vapor deposition
Scanning electron microscopy
The authors would like to acknowledge Shuai Luo and Xiaoye Wang for their help with the MOCVD work. The work was supported by the 973 Program (no. 2012CB932701) and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (nos. 60990313, 60990315, and 21173068).
This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.