Surface analysis of plasma pretreated sapphire substrate for aluminum nitride buffer layer

Woo Seop Jeong, Dae Sik Kim, Seung Hee Cho, Chul Kim, Junggeun Jhin, Dongjin Byun

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Recently, the use of an aluminum nitride(AlN) buffer layer has been actively studied for fabricating a high quality gallium nitride(GaN) template for high efficiency Light Emitting Diode(LED) production. We confirmed that AlN deposition after N2 plasma treatment of the substrate has a positive influence on GaN epitaxial growth. In this study, N2 plasma treatment was performed on a commercial patterned sapphire substrate by RF magnetron sputtering equipment. GaN was grown by metal organic chemical vapor deposition(MOCVD). The surface treated with N2 plasma was analyzed by x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy(XPS) to determine the binding energy. The XPS results indicated the surface was changed from Al2O3 to AlN and AlON, and we confirmed that the thickness of the pretreated layer was about 1 nm using high resolution transmission electron microscopy(HR-TEM). The AlN buffer layer deposited on the grown pretreated layer had lower crystallinity than the as-treated PSS. Therefore, the surface N2 plasma treatment on PSS resulted in a reduction in the crystallinity of the AlN buffer layer, which can improve the epitaxial growth quality of the GaN template.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)699-704
Number of pages6
JournalKorean Journal of Materials Research
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Dec 1


  • AlN
  • Buffer
  • GaN
  • PSS
  • Pretreatment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)


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