The scanning electron microscope as a flexible tool for investigating the properties of UV-emitting nitride semiconductor thin films

C. Trager-Cowan1, A. Alasmari1, W. Avis1, J. Bruckbauer1, P.R. Edwards1, B. Hourahine1, S. Kraeusel1, G. Kusch1, R. Johnston1, G. Naresh-Kumar1, R.W. Martin1, M. Nouf-Allehiani1, E. Pascal1, L. Spasevski1, D. Thomson1, S. Vespucci1, P.J. Parbrook2, M.D. Smith2, J. Enslin3, F. Mehnke3, M. Kneissl3,4, C. Kuhn3, T. Wernicke3, S. Hagedorn4, A. Knauer4, V. Kueller4, S. Walde4, M. Weyers4, P.-M. Coulon5, P.A. Shields5, Y. Zhang6, L. Jiu6, Y. Gong6, R.M. Smith6, T. Wang6, and A. Winkelmann1,7

Published in:

Photonics Res., vol. 7, no. 11, pp. B73-B82, DOI: 10.1364/PRJ.7.000B73 (2019).

Published by Chinese Laser Press under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License. Further distribution of this work must maintain attribution to the author(s) and the published article’s title, journal citation, and DOI.


In this paper we describe the scanning electron microscopy techniques of electron backscatter diffraction, electron channeling contrast imaging, wavelength dispersive X-ray spectroscopy, and cathodoluminescence hyperspectral imaging. We present our recent results on the use of these non-destructive techniques to obtain information on the topography, crystal misorientation, defect distributions, composition, doping, and light emission from a range of UV-emitting nitride semiconductor structures. We aim to illustrate the developing capability of each of these techniques for understanding the properties of UV-emitting nitride semiconductors, and the benefits were appropriate, in combining the techniques.

1 Department of Physics, SUPA, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow G4 0NG, UK
2 Tyndall National Institute, University College Cork, Cork T12 R5CP, Ireland
3 Institute of Solid State Physics, Technische Universität Berlin, 10623 Berlin, Germany
4 Ferdinand-Braun-Institut, Leibniz-Institut für Höchstfrequenztechnik, 12489 Berlin, Germany
5 Department of Electronic and Electrical Engineering, Centre of Nanoscience & Nanotechnology, University of Bath, Bath BA2 7AY, UK
6 Department of Electronic and Electrical Engineering, University of Sheffield, Sheffield S1 3JD, UK
7 Laser Components Department, Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V., 30419 Hannover, Germany