Chemical, electrical, and structural properties of Ni/Au contacts on chemical vapor cleaned p-type GaN

P. J. Hartlieb, A. Roskowski, R. F. Davis, R. J. Nemanich

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29 Scopus citations


Chemical vapor cleaned, Mg-doped, p-type GaN(0001) surfaces and Ni/Au contacts deposited on these surfaces have been studied using several characterization techniques. Stoichiometric surfaces without detectable carbon and an 87% reduction in the surface oxygen to 2±1at.% were achieved. The binding energies of the Ga 3d and N 1s core level photoelectron peaks were reduced by 0.5±0.1eV following the chemical vapor clean. The band bending at the clean surface was measured to be 0.8±0.1eV. As-deposited Ni/Au contacts on chemical vapor cleaned surfaces exhibited significantly less rectification in the low voltage region (<2 V) compared to identical contact structures on conventional HCl treated surfaces. The specific contact resistance of these contacts deposited on chemical vapor cleaned surfaces and subsequently annealed at 450°C for 30 seconds was 3±2cm 2. Improved ohmic behavior and a specific contact resistance of 4±2cm 2 was obtained for contacts deposited on HCl treated surfaces and annealed using the same schedule. The formation of Au:Ga and Au:Ni solid solutions was observed for contacts on HCl treated surfaces following the 450°C anneal. There were significantly less interfacial reactions for annealed contacts on chemical vapor cleaned surfaces. The values of specific contact resistance, sheet resistance, and transfer length of the annealed contacts deposited on both chemical vapor cleaned and HCl treated surfaces and measured from room temperature to 140°C did not change during three successive thermal cycles within this range.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)9151-9160
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Applied Physics
Issue number11
StatePublished - Jun 1 2002
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Physics and Astronomy


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