Plasma-assisted molecular beam epitaxy of GaN on porous SiC substrates with varying porosity
We have grown GaN on porous SiC substrates and studied the effect of substrate porosity on the overgrown film quality in terms of defect structure and density and film strain. The growth was performed by plasma-assisted molecular beam epitaxy. The GaN films were characterized by x-ray diffraction, transmission electron microscopy (TEM), and wafer curvature measurements by surface profilometry. TEM images show that the GaN film grown on porous substrates contains open tubes and a relatively low dislocation density in regions between tubes. We discuss various growth mechanisms that can lead to these defect features in the GaN film. However, we do not find any overall improvement in the x-ray rocking curve full width at half maximum of the GaN films grown on porous substrates compared to those on nonporous substrates. It was found that the GaN films grown on porous SiC were significantly more strain relaxed compared to those grown on nonporous substrate. We attribute this strain relaxation in part to the observed half-loop dislocations which form at the walls of the open tubes in the GaN films. © 2003 American Vacuum Society.