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  1. Free, publicly-accessible full text available January 12, 2025
  2. Free, publicly-accessible full text available October 16, 2024
  3. As the field of exfoliated van der Waals electronics grows to include complex heterostructures, the variety of available in-plane symmetries and geometries becomes increasingly valuable. In this work, we present an efficient chemical vapor transport synthesis of NbSe2I2 with the triclinic space group P1̅. This material contains Nb–Nb dimers and an in-plane crystallographic angle γ = 61.3°. We show that NbSe2I2 can be exfoliated down to few-layer and monolayer structures and use Raman spectroscopy to test the preservation of the crystal structure of exfoliated thin films. The crystal structure was verified by single-crystal and powder X-ray diffraction methods. Density functional theory calculations show triclinic NbSe2I2 to be a semiconductor with a band gap of around 1 eV, with similar band structure features for bulk and monolayer crystals. The physical properties of NbSe2I2 have been characterized by transport, thermal, optical, and magnetic measurements, demonstrating triclinic NbSe2I2 to be a diamagnetic semiconductor that does not exhibit any phase transformation below room temperature. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available January 4, 2025
  4. The ultra-wide bandgap (UWBG) energy (∼5.4 eV) of α-phase Ga2O3 offers the potential to achieve higher power switching performance and efficiency than today's power electronic devices. However, a major challenge to the development of the α-Ga2O3 power electronics is overheating, which can degrade the device performance and cause reliability issues. In this study, thermal characterization of an α-Ga2O3 MOSFET was performed using micro-Raman thermometry to understand the device self-heating behavior. The α-Ga2O3 MOSFET exhibits a channel temperature rise that is more than two times higher than that of a GaN high electron mobility transistor (HEMT). This is mainly because of the low thermal conductivity of α-Ga2O3 (11.9 ± 1.0 W/mK at room temperature), which was determined via laser-based pump-probe experiments. A hypothetical device structure was constructed via simulation that transfer-bonds the α-Ga2O3 epitaxial structure over a high thermal conductivity substrate. Modeling results suggest that the device thermal resistance can be reduced to a level comparable to or even better than those of today's GaN HEMTs using this strategy combined with thinning of the α-Ga2O3 buffer layer. The outcomes of this work suggest that device-level thermal management is essential to the successful deployment of UWBG α-Ga2O3 devices. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available November 6, 2024
  5. Abstract

    Symmetry-protected topological crystalline insulators (TCIs) have primarily been characterized by their gapless boundary states. However, in time-reversal- ($${{{{{{{\mathcal{T}}}}}}}}$$T-) invariant (helical) 3D TCIs—termed higher-order TCIs (HOTIs)—the boundary signatures can manifest as a sample-dependent network of 1D hinge states. We here introduce nested spin-resolved Wilson loops and layer constructions as tools to characterize the intrinsic bulk topological properties of spinful 3D insulators. We discover that helical HOTIs realize one of three spin-resolved phases with distinct responses that are quantitatively robust to large deformations of the bulk spin-orbital texture: 3D quantum spin Hall insulators (QSHIs), “spin-Weyl” semimetals, and$${{{{{{{\mathcal{T}}}}}}}}$$T-doubled axion insulator (T-DAXI) states with nontrivial partial axion angles indicative of a 3D spin-magnetoelectric bulk response and half-quantized 2D TI surface states originating from a partial parity anomaly. Using ab-initio calculations, we demonstrate thatβ-MoTe2realizes a spin-Weyl state and thatα-BiBr hosts both 3D QSHI and T-DAXI regimes.

     
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  6. Gallium nitride (GaN) high electron mobility transistors (HEMTs) are key components enabling today’s wireless communication systems. However, overheating concerns hinder today’s commercial GaN HEMTs from reaching their full potential. Therefore, it is necessary to characterize the respective thermally resistive components that comprise the device’s thermal resistance and determine their contributions to the channel temperature rise. In this work, the thermal conductivity of the GaN channel/buffer layer and the effective thermal boundary resistance (TBR) of the GaN/substrate interface of a GaN-on-SiC wafer were measured using a frequency-domain thermoreflectance technique. The results were validated by both experiments and modeling of a transmission line measurement (TLM) structure fabricated on the GaN-on-SiC wafer. The limiting GaN/substrate thermal boundary conductance (TBC) beyond which there is no influence on the device temperature rise was then quantified for different device configurations. It was determined that this limiting TBC is a function of the substrate material, the direction in which heat primarily flows, and the channel temperature. The outcomes of this work provide device engineers with guidance in the design of epitaxial GaN wafers that will help minimize the device’s thermal resistance. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available August 24, 2024
  7. Gallium nitride (GaN) high electron mobility transistors (HEMTs) are key components of modern radio frequency (RF) power amplifiers. However, device self-heating negatively impacts both the performance and reliability of GaN HEMTs. Accordingly, laser-based pump-probe methods have been used to characterize the thermal resistance network of epitaxial material stacks that are used to fabricate HEMT structures. However, validation studies of these measurement results at the device level are lacking. In the present work, a GaN-on-SiC wafer was characterized using frequency-domain thermoreflectance and steady-state thermoreflectance techniques. The thermal conductivity of the GaN channel/buffer layer, SiC substrate, and the interfacial thermal boundary resistance at the GaN/SiC interface were determined. Results were validated by performing thermal imaging and modeling of a transmission line measurement (TLM) structure fabricated on the GaN-on-SiC wafer. 
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  8. β-phase gallium oxide ( β-Ga2O3) has drawn significant attention due to its large critical electric field strength and the availability of low-cost high-quality melt-grown substrates. Both aspects are advantages over gallium nitride (GaN) and silicon carbide (SiC) based power switching devices. However, because of the poor thermal conductivity of β-Ga2O3, device-level thermal management is critical to avoid performance degradation and component failure due to overheating. In addition, for high-frequency operation, the low thermal diffusivity of β-Ga2O3 results in a long thermal time constant, which hinders the use of previously developed thermal solutions for devices based on relatively high thermal conductivity materials (e.g., GaN transistors). This work investigates a double-side diamond-cooled β-Ga2O3 device architecture and provides guidelines to maximize the device’s thermal performance under both direct current (dc) and high-frequency switching operation. Under high-frequency operation, the use of a β-Ga2O3 composite substrate (bottom-side cooling) must be augmented by a diamond passivation overlayer (top-side cooling) because of the low thermal diffusivity of β-Ga2O3. 
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  9. The demand for high power and high-frequency radio frequency (RF) power amplifiers makes AlGaN/GaN high electron mobility transistors (HEMTs) an attractive option due to their large critical field, high saturation velocity, and reduced device footprint as compared to Si-based counterparts. However, due to the high operating power densities, intense device self-heating occurs, which degrades the electrical performance and compromises the device’s reliability. The self-heating behavior of AlGaN/GaN HEMTs is known to be not solely a function of the dissipated power but is highly bias-dependent. As the operation of RF power amplifiers involves alteration of the device operation from fully-open to pinched-off channel conditions, it is critical to experimentally map the full channel temperature profile as a function of bias conditions. However, such measurement is difficult using optical thermography techniques due to the lack of optical access underneath the gate electrode, where the peak temperature is expected to occur.

    To address this challenge, an AlGaN/GaN HEMT employing a transparent gate made of indium tin oxide (ITO) was fabricated, which enables full channel temperature mapping using Raman spectroscopy. It was found that the maximum channel temperature rise under a partially pinched-off condition is more than ∼93% higher than that for an open channel condition, although both conditions would lead to an identical power dissipation level. The channel peak temperature probed in an ITO-gated device (underneath the gate) is ∼33% higher than the highest channel temperature that can be measured for a standard metal-gated AlGaN/GaN HEMT (i.e., next to the metal gate structure) operating under an identical bias condition. This indicates that one may significantly underestimate the device’s thermal resistance when solely relying on performing thermal characterization on the optically accessible region of a standard AlGaN/GaN HEMT. The outcomes of this study are important in terms of conducting a more accurate lifetime prediction of the device lifetime and designing thermal management solutions.

     
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