On the Mechanisms Governing Aluminum-Mediated Solid-Phase Epitaxy of Silicon
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Mechanisms governing the aluminum-mediated solid-phase epitaxy of Si on patterned crystalline Si substrates have been identified by studying the deposited material as a function of growth conditions when varying parameters such as temperature, growth time, and layer-stack properties. Early growth stages can be discerned as first formation of “free” Si at the Al/α-Si interface, then diffusion of Si along the Al grain boundaries, nucleation at the Si substrate surface, nuclei rearrangement, and finally crystal growth. The acquired understanding is applied to control the selectivity and completeness of single-crystal growth in various sizes of contact windows to the Si substrate.