Both β-Ga2O3 and wurtzite AlN have wide bandgaps of 4.5–4.9 and 6.1 eV, respectively. We calculated the in-plane lattice mismatch between the (−201) plane of β-Ga2O3 and the (0002) plane of AlN, which was found to be 2.4%. This is the smallest mismatch between β-Ga2O3 and binary III-nitrides which is beneficial for the formation of a high quality β-Ga2O3/AlN heterojunction. However, the valence and conduction band offsets (VBO and CBO) at the β-Ga2O3/AlN heterojunction have not yet been identified. In this study, a very thin (less than 2 nm) β-Ga2O3 layer was deposited on an AlN/sapphire template to form the heterojunction by pulsed laser deposition. High-resolution X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy revealed the core-level (CL) binding energies of Ga 3d and Al 2p with respect to the valence band maximum in individual β-Ga2O3 and AlN layers, respectively. The separation between Ga 3d and Al 2p CLs at the β-Ga2O3/AlN interface was also measured. Eventually, the VBO was found to be −0.55 ± 0.05 eV. Consequently, a staggered-gap (type II) heterojunction with a CBO of −1.75 ± 0.05 eV was determined. The identification of the band alignment of the β-Ga2O3/AlN heterojunction could facilitate the design of optical and electronic devices based on these and related alloys.
Sun, Haiding; Park, Young Jae; Li, Kuang-Hui; Torres Castanedo, C. G.; Alowayed, Abdulmohsen; Detchprohm, Theeradetch; Dupuis, Russell D.; Li, Xiaohang(Applied Physics Letters, AIP Publishing, 2017-09-21)[Article]
Owing to large bandgaps of BAlN and AlGaN alloys, their heterojunctions have the potential to be used in deep ultraviolet and power electronic device applications. However, the band alignment of such junctions has not been identified. In this work, we investigated the band-offset parameters of a BAlN/AlGaN heterojunction grown by metalorganic vapor phase epitaxy. These specific compositions were chosen to ensure a sufficiently large band offset for deep ultraviolet and power electronic applications. High resolution transmission electron microscopy confirmed the high structural quality of the heterojunction with an abrupt interface and uniform element distribution. We employed high resolution X-ray photoemission spectroscopy to measure the core level binding energies of B 1s and Ga 2p with respect to the valence band maximum of BAlN and AlGaN layers, respectively. Then, we measured the energy separation between the B 1s and Ga 2p core levels at the interface of the heterojunction. The valence band offset was determined to be 0.40 ± 0.05 eV. As a consequence, we identified a staggered-gap (type-II) heterojunction with the conduction band offset of 1.10 ± 0.05 eV. The determination of the band alignment of the BAlN/AlGaN heterojunction facilitates the design of optical and electronic devices based on such junctions.
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