Nov 22, 2005
Aligned indium nitride nanofingers show excellent field emission properties
As an important group III nitride semiconductor, indium nitride (InN) has promising transport and optical properties. These could render it better than gallium nitride (GaN) for use in field-effect transistors. However, the fabrication of high-quality InN nanostructures is difficult because of the material's low dissociation temperature.
Researchers at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore have demonstrated the synthesis of InN nanofingers on silicon substrates using a novel ion-beam assisted filtered cathodic arc technique at low temperature. Central to the method is the interaction of reactive nitrogen ions with energetic indium plasma on a lattice mismatched substrate.
The InN nanofingers exhibited excellent field emission properties - low threshold field, high emission current and stable emission. These characteristics may find application in robust field emitters for vacuum devices. The team is also investigating the transport properties of the InN nanofingers as they may be promising for high-frequency field effect transistors. What's more, the technique should be capable of fabricating useful nanostructures from other group III nitride semiconductors.
About the author
Shu Ping Lau, Siu Fung Yu, Ji Xiaohong and Yang Huiying are from the School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.