Nature of metastable amorphous-to-crystalline reversible phase transformations in GaSb


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Kalkan B. , Edwards T. G. , Raoux S., Sen S.

JOURNAL OF CHEMICAL PHYSICS, vol.139, no.8, 2013 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 139 Issue: 8
  • Publication Date: 2013
  • Doi Number: 10.1063/1.4818805
  • Title of Journal : JOURNAL OF CHEMICAL PHYSICS

Abstract

The structural, thermodynamic, and kinetic aspects of the transformations between the metastable amorphous and crystalline phases of GaSb are investigated as a function of pressure at ambient temperature using synchrotron x-ray diffraction experiments in a diamond anvil cell. The results are consistent with the hypothesis that the pressure induced crystallization of amorphous GaSb into the beta-Sn crystal structure near similar to 5 GPa is possibly a manifestation of an underlying polyamorphic phase transition between a semiconducting, low density and a metallic, high density amorphous (LDA and HDA, respectively) phases. In this scenario, the large differences in the thermal crystallization kinetics between amorphous GaSb deposited in thin film form by sputtering and that prepared by laser melt quenching may be related to the relative location of the glass transition temperature of the latter in the pressure-temperature (P-T) space with respect to the location of the critical point that terminate the LDA. HDA transition. The morphous -> beta-Sn phase transition is found to be hysteretically reversible as the beta-Sn phase undergoes decompressive amorphization near similar to 2 GPa due to the lattice instabilities that give rise to density fluctuations in the crystal upon decompression. (C) 2013 AIP Publishing LLC.