Surface hydride composition of plasma deposited hydrogenated amorphous silicon: In situ infrared study of ion flux and temperature dependence

D. C. Marra, W. M.M. Kessels, M. C.M. Van de Sanden, K. Kashefizadeh, E. S. Aydil

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The surface silicon hydride composition of plasma deposited hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) films has been investigated through surface sensitive in situ attenuated total reflection infrared spectroscopy. The fraction of SiHx (x = 1,2,3) on the surface is reported for films deposited at substrate temperatures in the range 40-370 °C and a series decomposition reaction set in which higher hydrides decompose into lower hydrides (SiH3→SiH2→SiH) for increasing substrate temperature is proposed. Surface dangling bonds promote the decomposition reactions on a-Si:H as concluded from experiments in which the incident ion flux during deposition is enhanced. A comparison is made with results reported for hydrogenated crystalline silicon surfaces and the hydrogen coverage of the a-Si:H surface is discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-16
Number of pages16
JournalSurface Science
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - Apr 20 2003



  • Amorphous surfaces
  • Growth
  • Infrared absorption spectroscopy
  • Ion bombardment
  • Plasma processing
  • Silicon
  • Surface chemical reaction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Materials Chemistry

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