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Origin of strong photoluminescence polarization in GaNP nanowires
Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology, Functional Electronic Materials. Linköping University, The Institute of Technology.
University of California, La Jolla, USA.
University of California, La Jolla, USA.
University of California, La Jolla, USA.
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2014 (English)In: Nano letters (Print), ISSN 1530-6984, E-ISSN 1530-6992, Vol. 14, no 9, 5264-5269 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The III-V semiconductor nanowires (NWs) have a great potential for applications in a variety of future electronic and photonic devices with enhanced functionality. In this work, we employ polarization resolved micro-photoluminescence (µ-PL) spectroscopy to study polarization properties of light emissions from individual GaNP and GaP/GaNP core/shell nanowires (NWs) with average diameters ranging between 100 and 350 nm. We show that the near-band-edge emission, which originates from the GaNP regions of the NWs, is strongly polarized (up to 60 % at 150 K) in the direction perpendicular to the NW axis. The polarization anisotropy can be retained up to room temperature. This polarization behavior, which is unusual for zinc blende NWs, is attributed to local strain in the vicinity of the N-related centers participating in the radiative recombination and to preferential alignment of their principal axis along the growth direction. Our findings therefore show that defect engineering via alloying with nitrogen provides an additional degree of freedom to tailor the polarization anisotropy of III-V nanowires, advantageous for their applications as nanoscale emitters of polarized light.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
American Chemical Society (ACS), 2014. Vol. 14, no 9, 5264-5269 p.
Keyword [en]
Nanowire; photoluminescence; polarization
National Category
Condensed Matter Physics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-109932DOI: 10.1021/nl502281pISI: 000341544500053PubMedID: 25162940OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-109932DiVA: diva2:741667
Available from: 2014-08-28 Created: 2014-08-28 Last updated: 2017-12-05Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Optical properties of novel semiconductor nanostructures
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Optical properties of novel semiconductor nanostructures
2014 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Semiconductor nanostructures, such as one-dimensional nanowires (NWs) and zerodimensional quantum dots (QDs), have recently gained increasing interest due to their unique physical properties that are found attractive for a wide variety of applications ranging from gas sensing and spintronics to optoelectronics and photonics. Here, especially promising are nanostructures based on compound semiconductors, including ZnO, GaNP and GaAs/InAs. For examples, ZnO NWs are used for gas sensing. They also serve as an active material in UV light sources, owing to its wide band gap combined with a large exciton binding energy. GaNP NWs are a novel material system that allows realization of efficient amber lightemitting diodes and novel intermediate-band solar cells with an anticipated high efficiency. InAs QDs formed in the GaAs matrix are efficient emitters of near IR light and can be utilized in future spin-functional devices for applications in spintronics and quantum information processing. The realization of the full potential of semiconductor nanostructures requires detailed knowledge of their electronic and structural properties which is far from being complete at the present stage of research. In this thesis we address some of these important issues using optical characterization techniques, such as micro-Raman and  microphotoluminescence (μ-PL) spectroscopies.

In paper I we use Raman spectroscopy to investigate effects of metallization by nickel on electronic and structural properties of ZnO/Ni core/shell NWs. We show that coating ZnO NWs with Ni shells causes passivation of surface states whereas subsequent annealing leads to formation of new defects, evident from appearance of the corresponding local vibrational modes. Ni coating is also found to strongly enhance the multiline Raman signal involving A1(LO) phonon scattering, based on the performed resonant Raman studies. This is attributed to an enhanced Fröhlich interaction at the ZnO/Ni heterointerface combined with coupling of the scattered light with local surface plasmons excited in the Ni shell. The latter effect is also suggested to allow detection of carbon-related species absorbed at the surface of a single ZnO/Ni NW, promising for utilizing such structures as efficient nano-sized gas sensors.

In paper II we study polarization properties of GaNP nanowires and related axial structures. By employing polarization resolved μ-PL spectroscopy performed on a single NW, we show that alloying with nitrogen allows one to achieve strong orthogonal polarization of light emission even in zinc-blende nanowires of various diameters and that the polarization anisotropy can be retained up to room temperature. This polarization response, which is unusual for zinc blende NWs, is attributed to the local strain in the vicinity of the N-related centers participating in the radiative recombination and to the preferential alignment of their principal axis along the growth direction. Our findings therefore show that defect engineering via alloying with nitrogen provides an additional degree of freedom to control the polarization anisotropy of III-V nanowires, advantageous for their applications as nanoscale emitters of polarized light.

In paper III we investigate exciton fine-structure splitting (FSS) in self-organized InGaAs/GaAs nanostructures including laterally-aligned double quantum dots (DQDs), quantum-dot clusters (QCs) and quantum rings (QRs), by employing polarization resolved μ-PL spectroscopy. We find a clear trend in FSS between the studied nanostructures depending on their geometric arrangements, from a large FSS in the DQDs to a smaller FSS in the QCs and QRs with an overall higher geometric symmetry. This trend is accompanied by a corresponding difference in the polarization directions of the excitonic emissions between these nanostructures, namely, the bright-exciton lines are linearly polarized along or perpendicular to a specific crystallographic axis in the DQDs structure that also defines the alignment of the two QDs, whereas in the QCs and QRs the polarization directions are randomly oriented. We attribute these trends to the interplay between intrinsic effects, such as a statistic shape deviation, atomistic randomness and strain-induced piezoelectricity. Our work demonstrates that FSS can be effectively controlled by geometric engineering of the nanostructures, capable of reducing FSS to the limit similar to strain-free QDs and thus providing a new pathway in fabricating high-symmetry quantum emitters desirable for realizing photon entanglement and spintronic devices based on such nanostructures.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press, 2014. 34 p.
Series
Linköping Studies in Science and Technology. Thesis, ISSN 0280-7971 ; 1691
National Category
Physical Sciences Nano Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-112355 (URN)978-91-7519-185-0 (ISBN)
Presentation
2014-12-17, Jordan-Fermi, Fysikhuset, Campus Valla, Linköpings universitet, Linköping, 09:30 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

The series name Linköping Studies in Science and Technology Licentiate Thesis is incorrect. The correct series name is Linköping Studies in Science and Technology Thesis.

Available from: 2014-11-24 Created: 2014-11-24 Last updated: 2017-03-27Bibliographically approved
2. Micro-photoluminescence and micro-Raman spectroscopy of novel semiconductor nanostructures
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Micro-photoluminescence and micro-Raman spectroscopy of novel semiconductor nanostructures
2015 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Low-dimensional semiconductor structures, such as one-dimensional nanowires (NWs) and zerodimensional quantum dots (QDs), are materials with novel fundamental physical properties and a great potential for a wide range of nanoscale device applications. Here, especially promising are direct bandgap II-VI and III-V compounds and related alloys with a broad selection of compositions and band structures. For examples, NWs based on dilute nitride alloys, i.e. GaNAs and GaNP, provide both an optical active medium and well-shaped cavity and, therefore, can be used in a variety of advanced optoelectronic devices including intermediate band solar cells and efficient light-emitters. Self-assembled InAs QDs formed in the GaAs matrix are proposed as building blocks for entangled photon sources for quantum cryptography and quantum information processing as well as for spin light emitting devices. ZnO NWs can be utilized in a variety of applications including efficient UV lasers and gas sensors. In order to fully explore advantages of nanostructured materials, their electronic properties and lattice structure need to be comprehensively characterized and fully understood, which is not yet achieved in the case of aforementioned material systems. The research work presented this thesis addresses a selection of open issues via comprehensive optical characterization of individual nanostructures using micro-Raman ( -Raman) and micro-photoluminescence ( -PL) spectroscopies.

In paper 1 we study polarization properties of individual GaNP and GaP/GaNP core/shell NWs using polarization resolved μ-PL spectroscopy. Near band-edge emission in these structures is found to be strongly polarized (up to 60% at 150K) in the orthogonal direction to the NW axis, in spite of their zinc blende (ZB) structure. This polarization response, which is unusual for ZB NWs, is attributed to the local strain in the vicinity of the N-related centers participating in the radiative recombination and to their preferential alignment along the growth direction, presumably caused by the presence of planar defects. Our findings therefore show that defect engineering via alloying with nitrogen provides an additional degree of freedom to control the polarization anisotropy of III-V nanowires, advantageous for their applications as a nanoscale source of polarized light.

Structural and optical properties of novel coaxial GaAs/Ga(N)As NWs grown on Si substrates, were evaluated in papers 2-4. In paper 2 we show by using -Raman spectroscopy that, though nitrogen incorporation shortens a phonon correlation length, the GaNAs shell with [N]<0.6% has a low degree of alloy disorder and weak residual strain. Additionally, Raman scattering by the GaAs-like and GaNlike phonons is found to be enhanced when the excitation energy approaches the E+ transition energy. This effect was attributed the involvement of intermediate states that were created by N-related clusters in proximity to the E+ subband. Recombination processes in these structures were studied in paper 3 by means of μ-PL, μ-PL excitation (μ-PLE), and time-resolved PL spectroscopies. At low temperatures, the alloy disorder is found to localize photo-excited carriers leading to predominance of localized exciton (LE) transitions in the PL spectra. Some of the local fluctuations in N composition are suggested to create three-dimensional confining potentials equivalent to that for QDs, based on the observation of sharp PL lines within the LE contour. In paper 4 we show that the formation of these QD-like confinement potentials is somewhat facilitated in spatial regions of the NWs with a high density of structural defects, based on correlative spatially-resolved structural and optical studies. It is also concluded the principal axis of these QD-like local potentials is mainly oriented along the growth direction and emit light that is linearly polarized in the direction orthogonal to the NW axis. At room temperature, the PL emission is found to be dominated by recombination of free carriers/excitons and their lifetime is governed by non-radiative recombination via surface states. The surface recombination is found to become less severe upon N incorporation due to N-induced modification of the surface states, possibly due to partial surface nitridation. All these findings suggest that the GaNAs/GaAs hetero-structures with the onedimensional geometry are promising for fabrication of novel optoelectronic devices on foreign substrates (e.g. Si).

Fine-structure splitting (FSS) of excitons in semiconductor nanostructures has significant implications in photon entanglement, relevant to quantum information technology and spintronics. In paper 5 we study FSS in various laterally-arranged single quantum molecular structures (QMSs), including double QDs (DQDs), quantum rings (QRs), and QD-clusters (QCs), by means of polarization resolved μ-PL spectroscopy. It is found that FSS strongly depends on the geometric arrangements of the QMSs, which can effectively tune the degree of asymmetry in the lateral confinement potential of the excitons and can reduce FSS even in a strained QD system to a limit similar to strain-free QDs.

Fabrication of nanostructured ZnO-based devices involves, as a compulsory step, deposition of thin metallic layers. In paper 6 we investigate impact of metallization by Ni on structural quality of ZnO NWs by means of Raman spectroscopy. We show that Ni coating of ZnO NWs causes passivation of surface states responsible for the enhanced intensity of the A1(LO) in the bare ZnO NWs. From the resonant Raman studies, strong enhancement of the multiline Raman signal involving A1(LO) in the ZnO/Ni NWs is revealed and is attributed to the combined effects of the Fröhlich interaction and plasmonic coupling. The latter effect is also suggested to allow detection of carbon-related species absorbed at the surface of a single ZnO/Ni NW, promising for utilizing such structures as efficient nano-sized gas sensors.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press, 2015. 55 p.
Series
Linköping Studies in Science and Technology. Dissertations, ISSN 0345-7524 ; 1731
National Category
Physical Sciences Nano Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-123939 (URN)10.3384/diss.diva-123939 (DOI)978-91-7685-877-6 (ISBN)
Public defence
2016-02-05, Planck, Fysikhuset, Campus Valla, Linköping, 10:15 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2016-01-14 Created: 2016-01-14 Last updated: 2017-03-27Bibliographically approved

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