New Methods in the growth of InP on Si and Regrowth of Semi-insulating InP for Photonic Devices
Abstract: This thesis addresses new methods in the growth of indium phosphide on silicon for enabling silicon photonics and nano photonics as well as efficient and cost-effective solar cells. It also addresses the renewal of regrowth of semi-insulating indium phosphide for realizing buried heterostructure quantum cascade lasers with high power and wall plug efficiency for sensing applications.As regards indium phosphide on silicon, both crystalline and polycrystalline growth methods are investigated. The crystalline growth methods are: (i) epitaxial lateral overgrowth to realize large area InP on Si, for silicon photonics (ii) a modified epitaxial lateral overgrowth method, called corrugated epitaxial lateral overgrowth, to obtain indium phosphide/silicon heterointerface for efficient and cost effective solar cells and (iii) selective growth of nanopyramidal frusta on silicon for nanophotonics. The polycrystalline growth method on silicon for low cost solar cell fabrication has been realized via (i) phosphidisation of indium oxide coating synthesized from solution chemistry and (ii) phosphidisation cum growth on indium metal on silicon. All our studies involve growth, growth analysis and characterization of all the above crystalline and polycrystalline layers and structures.After taking into account the identified defect filtering mechanisms, we have implemented means of obtaining good optical quality crystalline layers and structures in our epitaxial growth methods. We have also identified feasible causes for the persistence of certain defects such as stacking faults. The novel methods of realizing indium phosphide/silicon heterointerface and nanopyramidal frusta of indium phosphide on silicon are particularly attractive for several applications other than the ones mentioned here.Both the polycrystalline indium phosphide growth methods result in good optical quality material on silicon. The indium assisted phosphidisation cum growth method normally results in larger grain size indium phosphide than the one involving phosphidisation of indium oxide. These two methods are generic and can be optimized for low cost solar cells of InP on any flexible substrate.The method of regrowth of semi-insulating indium phosphide that is routinely practiced in the fabrication of buried heterostructure telecom laser has been implemented for quantum cascade lasers. The etched ridges of the latter can be 6-15 µm deep, which is more than 2-3 times as those of the former. Although this is a difficult task, through our quick and flexible regrowth method we have demonstrated buried heterostructure quantum cascade lasers with an output power up to 2. 5 W and wall plug efficiency up to 9% under continuous operation.
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