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CMOS Compatible Erbium Coupled Si Nanocrystal Thin Films for Microphotonics

  • M. Stolfi (a1), L. Dal Negro (a1), J. Michel (a1), X. Duan (a1), J. Le Blanc (a2), J. Haavisto (a2) and L.C. Kimerling (a1)...

Er doped Si-rich SiO2 films were deposited through reactive RF magnetron co-sputtering and subjected to a single annealing step to simultaneously form silicon nanocrystals (Si-nc's) and activate the Er emission. Reference Er in stoichiometric SiO2 (Er:SiO2) films were deposited for comparison and the Er emission in the presence of Si-nc's was optimized with respect to the annealing temperature. The Er emission from Er in SiO2 containing Si-nc's (Er:SiO2+Si-nc) films is maximized at annealing temperatures between 600 °C and 800 °C, where the 1.54 μm emission is enhanced by more than two orders of magnitude relative to Er:SiO2 samples. Efficient energy coupling between Si-nc's and Er ions was demonstrated through excitation cross section measurements and non-resonant Er excitation experiments for samples annealed at temperatures as low as 600 °C. Since strong emission can be achieved from Er:SiO2+Si-nc films deposited through a standard CMOS process and annealed at temperatures below 700 °C, they can be used to fabricate CMOS compatible light

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