Electronic Properties of Amorphous Semiconductors: An Introduction

  • E. A. Schiff
Part of the Ettore Majorana International Science Series book series (EMISS, volume 46)


A self-contained, introductory review of several aspects of the electronic properties of amorphous semiconductors (primarily tetrahedrally bonded thin films and chalcogenide glasses) is given. The general features of the electronic bands in simple covalently bonded semiconductors are discussed. Principal emphasis is given to the relationship of these features to elementary viewpoints of covalent bonding; the cluster Bethe-lattice technique for calculating the density-of-states is described as an example of the possible theoretical refinements. Next the experimental knowledge of the bandedge density-of-states, and of electrical transport phenomena associated with bandedge states, is described. Optical spectroscopy, conductivity, thermopower, Hall effect, and transient drift mobility results are summarized. Finally an introduction to electronic defects in amorphous semiconductors is presented. The concepts of atomic relaxation and electronic correlation energies are introduced, and three special topics are treated: negative correlation energy defects in chalcogenide glass semiconductors, chemical doping of amorphous hydrogenated silicon, and the hydrogen-glass model for defect stability effects in amorphous hydrogenated silicon.


Electron Spin Resonance Radial Distribution Function Atomic Orbital Hall Mobility Chalcogenide Glass 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    J. I. Pankove, volume editor for Semiconductors and Semimetals 21A-D: Hydrogenated Amorphous Silicon (Academic Press, Orlando, 1984; Series Editors R. K. Willardson and A. C. Beer).Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    J. D. Joannopoulos and G. Lucovsky, editors of The Physics of Hydrogenated Amorphous Silicon, Volume II (Springer-Verlag, Berlin, 1983).Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    N. F. Mott and E. A. Davis, Electronic Processes in Non-Crystalline Materials, Second Edition (Oxford University Press, Oxford, 1979).Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    R. Zallen, The Physics of Amorphous Solids (Wiley, New York, 1983).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    N. F. Mott, Conduction in Non-Crystalline Materials (Oxford University Press, Oxford, 1987).Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    M. A. Kastner, G. A. Thomas, and S. R. Ovshinsky, editors, Disordered Semiconductors (Plenum Press, New York, 1987).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    M. H. Brodsky, editor, Amorphous Semiconductors, Second Edition (Springer-Verlag, Berlin, 1985).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    W. B. Jackson, S. M. Kelso, C. C. Tsai, J. W. Allen, and S. J. Oh, Phys. Rev. B 31, 5187 (1985).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    L. Ley, collected in ref. 1, p. 61.Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    N. F. Mott, Reports on Progress in Physics 46, 909 (1984).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    N. W. Ashcroft and N. D. Mermin, Solid State Physics (Holt, Rinehart and Winston, New York, 1976).Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    C. R. Brundle and A. D. Baker, editors, Electron Spectroscopy - Theory, Techniques, and Applications (Academic Press, New York, series 1977).Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    J. B. Pendry and J. F. L. Hopkinson, J. Phys. F: Metal Phys., 8, 1009 (1978).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    S. C. Moss and J. F. Graczyk, Proc. 10th Int. Conf. on the Physics of Semiconductors, Cambridge, Mass., edited by S. P. Keller, J. C. Hensel, and F. Stern (United States Atomic Energy Commission, Washington, D. C., 1970), p. 658.Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    G. Lucovsky and T. M Hayes, collected in ref. 7, p. 215.Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    M. A. Kastner, J. Non-Cryst. Solids 77&78, 1173 (1985).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    D. M. Burland and L. B. Schein, Physics Today 39, No. 5, 46 (1986).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    D. Adler, H. K. Henisch, and N. F. Mott, Rev. Mod Phys. 50, 203 (1978).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    T. M. Donovan and K. Heinemann, Phys. Rev. Lett. 27, 1794 (1971).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    M. H. Brodsky and R. S. Title, Phys. Rev. Lett. 23, 581 (1969).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    W. E. Spear and P. G. LeComber, Solid State Comm. 17, 1193 (1975).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    W. E. Spear and P. G. LeComber, J. Non-Cryst. Solids 8–10, 727 (1972).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. 23.
    D. E. Carlson and C. R. Wronski, Appt Phys. Lett. 28, 671 (1975).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. 24.
    Y. Hamakawa, P. G. LeComber, A. Madan, P. C. Taylor, and M. J. Thompson, editors, Amorphous Silicon Technology (Materials Research Society, Pittsburg, 1988).Google Scholar
  25. 25.
    J. Fortner, J. S. Lannin, and R. Fainchtein, Bull. Am. Phys. Soc. 33, 474 (Abstract Only).Google Scholar
  26. 26.
    K. K. Gleason, J. Baum, A. N. Garroway, A. Pines, and J. Reimer, collected in Materials Issues in Amorphous-Semiconductor Technology, edited by D. Adler, Y. Hamakawa and A. Madan (Materials Research Society, Symposia Proceedings Vol. 70, Pittsburg, 1986), p. 83.Google Scholar
  27. 27.
    S. P. McGlynn, Introduction to Applied Quantum Chemistry (Holt, Rinehart, and Winston, New York, 1972).Google Scholar
  28. 28.
    R. E. Ballard, Photoelectron Spectroscopy and Molecular Orbital Theory (Adam Hilger, Bristol, 1978).Google Scholar
  29. 29.
    A. W. Potts and W. C. Price, Proc. R. Soc. A326, 181 (1972).ADSGoogle Scholar
  30. 30.
    N. J. Shevchik, J. Tejeda, M. Cardona, and D. W Langer, Solid State Comm. 12, 1285 (1973).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. 31.
    V. Heine, collected in Solid State Physics, Volume 35, edited by H. Ehrenreich, F. Seitz, and D. Turnbull (Academic Press, New York, 1980), p. 1.Google Scholar
  32. 32.
    U. Gelius, collected in Electron Spectroscopy,ed. by D. A. Shirley (North-Holland, Amsterdam, 1972), p. 311.Google Scholar
  33. 33.
    L. Ley, S. P. Kowalczyk, R. Pollak, D. A. Shirley, Phys. Rev. Lett. 29, 1088 (1972).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. 34.
    J.-T. J. Huang and F. O. Ellison, J. Elect. Spectroscopy and Rel. Phen. 4, 233 (1974).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. 35.
    D. Allan and J. D. Joannopoulos, collected in ref. 2, p. 5.Google Scholar
  36. 36.
    W. A. Harrison, Electronic Structure and the Properties of Solids (W. H. Freeman, San Francisco, 1980).Google Scholar
  37. 37.
    K. C. Pandey, Phys. Rev. B 14, 1557 (1986).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. 38.
    E. N. Economou, Green’s Functions in Quantum Physics, Second Edition (Springer-Verlag, Berlin, 1983).Google Scholar
  39. 39.
    B. I. Shklovskii and A. L. Efros, Electronic Properties of Doped Semiconductors (Springer-Verlag, Berlin, 1984).Google Scholar
  40. 40.
    W. Beyer and H. Overhof, collected in ref. 1, Vol. 21C, p. 258.Google Scholar
  41. 41.
    D. J. Dunstan, J. Phys. C 30, L419 (1982).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. 42.
    J. Tauc, R. Grigorovici, A. Vancu, Phys. Stat. Solidi 15, 627 (1966).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. 43.
    R. A. Street and D. K. Biegelsen, collected in ref. 2, p. 195.Google Scholar
  44. 44.
    F. Urbach, Phys. Rev. 92, 1324 (1953).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. 45.
    G. Cody, collected in ref. 1, Vol. 21B, p. 11.Google Scholar
  46. 46.
    J. D. Dow and D. Redfield, Phys. Rev. B 5, 594 (1977).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. 47.
    S. Griep and L. Ley, J. Non-Cryst. Solids 59/60, 253 (1983).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. 48.
    V. Sa-Yakanit and H. R. Clyde, Comments Cond. Mat. Phys. 13, 35 (1987).Google Scholar
  49. 49.
    E. N. Economou, C. M Soukoulis, M. H. Cohen, and S. John, collected in ref. 6, p. 681 (1987).Google Scholar
  50. 50.
    E. A. Schiff, collected in ref. 24, in press (1988).Google Scholar
  51. 51.
    Don Monroe and M. Kastner, Phys. Rev. B 33, 8881 (1986).Google Scholar
  52. 52.
    G. Pfister and H. Scher, Adv. in Phys. 27, 747 (1978).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. 53.
    T. Tiedje, collected in ref. 2, p. 261.Google Scholar
  54. 54.
    J. Orenstein, M. Kastner, and V. Vaninov, Phil. Mag. B46, 23 (1982).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. 55.
    T. Tiedje, B. Abeles, and J. M. Cebulka, Solid State Comm. 47, 493 (1983).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. 56.
    J. Stuke, J. Non-Cryst. Solids 97&98, 19 (1987).Google Scholar
  57. 57.
    E. A. Davis, Phil. Mag. B 38, 463 (1978).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. 58.
    W. E. Spear, G. Willeke, P. G. LeComber, and A. G. Fitzgerald, Journale de Phys. C4, 257 (1981).Google Scholar
  59. 59.
    H. Overhof and W. Beyer, Phil. Mag. B 47, 377 (1983).Google Scholar
  60. 60.
    D. Emin, collected in ref. 6, p. 751 (1987).Google Scholar
  61. 61.
    M. Grunewald, P. Thomas, and D. Wurtz, J. Phys. C 14, 4083 (1981).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  62. 62.
    D. Monroe, Phys. Rev. Lett. 54, 146 (1985).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  63. 63.
    A. Madan, P. G. LeComber, and W. E. Spear, J. Non-Cryst. Solids 20, 239 (1976).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  64. 64.
    M. Kastner, D. Adler, and H. Fritzsche, Phys. Rev. Lett. 37, 1504 (1976).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  65. 65.
    M. Lannoo and J. Bourgoin, Point Defects in Semiconductors Volumes I & II (Springer-Verlag, Berlin, 1984).Google Scholar
  66. 66.
    Y. Bar-Yam and J. D. Joannopoulos, Phys. Rev. Lett. 56, 2203 (1986).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. 67.
    R. A. Stradling, collected in ref. 6, p. 57.Google Scholar
  68. 68.
    S. Pantelides, collected in ref. 24, in press.Google Scholar
  69. 69.
    H. Fritzsche, collected in Electronic and Structural Properties of Amorphous Semiconductors: Proceedings of the 13th Session of the Scottish Universities Summer School in Physics, edited by P. G. LeComber and J. Mort (Academic Press, New York, 1977), p. 55.Google Scholar
  70. 70.
    P. W. Anderson, Phys. Rev. Lett. 34, 953 (1975).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  71. 71.
    R. A. Street and N. F. Mott, Phys. Rev. Lett. 35, 1293 (1975).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  72. 72.
    S. G. Bishop and P. C. Taylor, Phys. Rev. B 15, 2278.Google Scholar
  73. 73.
    M. A. Kastner, J. Non-Cryst. Solids 77&78, 1173 (1985).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  74. 74.
    R. C. Frye and D. Adler, Phys. Rev. Lett. 46, 1027 (1981)ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  75. D. Adler, Jour. de Phys. C-4, No. 10, 3 (1981).Google Scholar
  76. 75.
    J. C. Knights, T. M. Hayes, J. C. Mikkelsen, Jr., Phys. Rev. Lett. 39, 712 (1977).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  77. 76.
    R. A. Street, J. Non-Cryst. Solids 77&78, 1 (1985).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  78. 77.
    D. Adler, M. Silver, M. P. Shaw, and V. Canella, collected in Materials Issues in Amorphous-Semiconductor Technology (Materials Research Society, Symposia Proceedings Vol. 70, Pittsburg, 1986), p. 113.Google Scholar
  79. 78.
    D. Adler, Physics of Amorphous Semiconductor Devices,edited by D. Adler (SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering, Proceedings Vol. 763, Bellingham, Washington, U. S. A.), p. 2.Google Scholar
  80. 79.
    R. A. Street, Phys. Rev. B 37, 4209 (1988).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  81. 80.
    B. L. Stafford and E. Sabisky, editors, Stability of Amorphous Silicon Alloy Materials and Devices (American Institute of Physics, Conference Proceedings Vol. 157, New York, 1987).Google Scholar
  82. 81.
    R. A. Street, J. Kakalios, C. C. Tsai, and T. M. Hayes, Phys. Rev. B 35, 1316 (1987).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  83. 82.
    J. Kakalios, R. A. Street, and W. B. Jackson, Phys. Rev. Lett. 59, 1037 (1987).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  84. 83.
    W. B. Jackson and R. A. Street, Phys. Rev. B 37, 1020 (1988).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • E. A. Schiff
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PhysicsSyracuse UniversitySyracuseUSA

Personalised recommendations