The carrier transport and tunneling capabilities of biaxially strained Ge1−xSnx alloys with (001), (110), and (111) orientations were comprehensively investigated and compared. The electron band structures of biaxially strained Ge1−xSnx alloys were calculated by the nonlocal empirical pseudopotential method and the modified virtual crystal approximation was adopted in the calculation. The electron and hole effective masses at the band edges were extracted using a parabolic line fit. It is shown that the applied biaxial strain and the high Sn composition are both helpful for the reduction of carrier effective masses, which leads to the enhanced carrier mobility and the boosted direct band-to-band-tunneling probability. Furthermore, the strain induced valance band splitting reduces the hole interband scattering, and the splitting also results in the significantly enhanced direct tunneling rate along the out-of-plane direction compared with that along the in-plane direction. The biaxially strained (111) Ge1−xSnx alloys exhibit the smallest band gaps compared with (001) and (110) orientations, leading to the highest in-plane and out-of-plane direct tunneling probabilities. The small effective masses on (110) and (111) planes in some strained conditions also contribute to the enhanced carrier mobility and tunneling probability. Therefore, the biaxially strained (110) and (111) Ge1−xSnx alloys have the potential to outperform the corresponding (001) Ge1−xSnx devices. It is important to optimize the applied biaxial strain, the Sn composition, and the substrate orientation for the design of high performance Ge1−xSnx field-effect transistors.
Enhanced carrier mobility and direct tunneling probability of biaxially strained Ge1−xSnx alloys for field-effect transistors applications
Lei Liu, Renrong Liang, Jing Wang, Jun Xu; Enhanced carrier mobility and direct tunneling probability of biaxially strained Ge1−xSnx alloys for field-effect transistors applications. J. Appl. Phys. 14 May 2015; 117 (18): 184501. https://doi.org/10.1063/1.4921107
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