Structural defects in InSb quantum well (QW) samples have been investigated by transmission electron microscopy (TEM). Using molecular beam epitaxy, an InSb QW with remotely-doped Al0.09In0.91Sb barriers was grown on a GaAs (001) substrate with buffer layers consisting of, in order from the substrate: 1 μm of GaSb, 1 μm of AlSb, 50 nm of GaSb-AlSb strained layer superlattice (SLS), and 3 μm of Al0.09In0.91Sb. Cross-sectional TEM analysis indicates that high densities of threading dislocations (TDs) are created at the two highly lattice-mismatched interfaces, the Al0.09In0.91Sb/GaSb-AlSb SLS and the GaSb/GaAs interfaces. Pairs of stereo images taken from plan-view TEM (PV-TEM) specimens show that TDs propagate through the InSb QW layer. The densities of TDs and micro-twin (MT) defects measured by PV-TEM are 9×108/cm2 and 4×103/cm, respectively. These values are worse than those in an InSb QW layer grown with a different buffer layer by a factor of ∼4. The different buffer layer contains an InSb interlayer that effectively filters out both TDs and MTs. Adopting an interlayer structure and reducing the GaSb and AlSb layer thickness may make it possible to fabricate a lower-defect-density yet thinner InSb QW sample with the type of buffer layer examined in this study.
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