Rutherford backscattering spectrometry and transmission electron microscopy were used to compare thermally induced solid phase epitaxy (SPE) with ion-beam induced epitaxial crystallization (IBIEC) of Fe-implanted Si (001). It was found that thermal annealing leads to both Si SPE and β-FeSi2 precipitation at 520°C, but has no visible effect at 320°C. In contrast, Si SPE and FeSi2 precipitation occur at both 320 and 520°C, when ion irradiation is introduced. The precipitates grow epitaxially as γ-FeSi2 at 320°C, but consist of both β-FeSi2 and γ-FeSi2 at 520°C. It was also found that thermal annealing at 520°C results in Fe segregation toward the surface, while IBIEC basically retains the as-implanted Fe profile.
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