# 15th International Conference on Muon Spin Rotation, Relaxation and Resonance

28 August 2022 to 2 September 2022
Science and Technology Campus, University of Parma
Europe/Rome timezone
Submission deadline for Conference Proceedings extended until 3 October

## Profiling defect and charge carrier density in the SiO$_2$/4H-SiC interface with Low-Energy Muons

28 Aug 2022, 15:15
15m
Aula dei Cavalieri, University Central Palace, via Università 12

#### Aula dei Cavalieri, University Central Palace, via Università 12

Oral Semiconductors

### Speaker

Maria Mendes Martins (Laboratory for Muon Spin Spectroscopy, Paul Scherrer Institute)

### Description

Silicon carbide (4H-SiC) is a wide-bandgap semiconductor with promising applications in high-power and high-frequency devices. An advantage of SiC is that it is the only compound semiconductor that has the ability to form native silicon dioxide (SiO$_2$). The performance of SiC-based devices relies heavily on interface effects. However, characterization of oxidation-induced defects - both in the oxide and the semiconductor - is still challenging.
Low-energy muon spin spectroscopy (LE-$\mu$SR) can probe regions very close to the surface and interface up to a depth of 160 nm in SiO$_2$/SiC structures and is sensitive to charge carrier and defect concentrations.

We have studied SiO$_2$/SiC interfacial systems with thermally grown and deposited oxides using LE-$\mu$SR. The thermal SiO$_2$ has higher structural order, as indicated by the undisturbed muonium (Mu$^0$) formation. However, the oxidation process leads to strain in the oxide and to band-bending at the SiC-side of the interface, which affects the SiC faces differently: i) at the (0001) Si-face the results can be explained by the depletion of electrons at the interface and ii) at the (000$\overline{1}$) C-face a carbon-rich n-type region contributes to the increase of the diamagnetic fraction due to Mu$^-$ formation.
Further investigations have been conducted to understand the passivation effects of state-of-the-art post-oxidation annealing (POA) processes on the SiO$_2$/SiC interface. Particularly, POA in an NO environment leads to an increase in charge carrier concentration near the interface, likely due to N acting as a dopant, which can be quantified based on the measured diamagnetic fraction.

### Primary author

Maria Mendes Martins (Laboratory for Muon Spin Spectroscopy, Paul Scherrer Institute)

### Co-authors

Mr Piyush Kumar (Advanced Power Semiconductor Laboratory) Dr Judith Woerle (Advanced Power Semiconductors) Xiaojie Ni (Paul Scherrer Institute) Prof. Ulrike Grossner (Advanced Power Semiconductors) Dr Thomas Prokscha (PSI)

### Presentation Materials

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