Imaging wurtzite GaN surfaces by molecular beam epitaxy-scanning tunneling microscopy

Q. K. Xue, Q. Z. Xue, S. Kuwano, T. Sakurai, T. Ohno, I. S.T. Tsong, X. G. Qiu, Y. Segawa

    Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

    13 Citations (Scopus)


    Using scanning tunneling microscopy (STM), reflection high-energy electron diffraction (RHEED) and first-principles total-energy calculations, we have investigated the surface reconstructions that occurred on the basal planes of wurtzite GaN. Depending on the substrate used, two distinct classes of reconstructions, which correspond to the different surface polarities of the hexagonal GaN, have been established. The Ga-polar surface forms on the Si-terminated 6H-SiC and displays the 10 × 10, 5√3 × 2√13, '5 × 2.5', 4 × 4, √7 × √7, 2 × 2 and 1 × 1. On the (0001̄) N-polar face grown on the C-terminated 6H-SiC substrate, three phases of 2√7 × 2√7, 6 × 6 and 2 × 4 are identified. Irrespective of surface polarity, all these phases are found to be Ga-rich. We will show that their structure is consistent with a simple Ga-adatom-based scheme. We will further show that the well-known electron counting model and structural motifs for the conventional III-V semiconductor reconstructed surfaces are insufficient to explain surface stability, and additional electron collective effects have to be considered in the case of GaN.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)149-158
    Number of pages10
    JournalThin Solid Films
    Issue number1-2
    Publication statusPublished - 2000 May 15
    Event3rd International Workshop MBE-GPT'99 - Warsaw, Poland
    Duration: 1999 May 231999 May 28


    • First-principles total-energy calculations
    • Scanning tunneling microscopy
    • Wurtzite GaN

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
    • Surfaces and Interfaces
    • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
    • Metals and Alloys
    • Materials Chemistry


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