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  1. Free, publicly-accessible full text available August 1, 2024
  2. β-Ga2O3 has attracted much recent attention as a promising ultrawide bandgap semiconductor. Hydrogen can affect the conductivity of β-Ga2O3 through the introduction of shallow donors and the passivation of deep acceptors. The introduction of H or D into β-Ga2O3 by annealing in an H2 or D2 ambient at elevated temperature produces different classes of O–H or O–D centers. This work is a study of the interaction of D with VGa1 and VGa2 deep acceptors as well as other impurities and native defects in Ga2O3 by infrared spectroscopy and the complementary theory. (We focus primarily on the deuterium isotope of hydrogen because the vibrational modes of O–D centers can be detected with a higher signal-to-noise ratio than those of O–H.) O–D centers in β-Ga2O3 evolve upon annealing in an inert ambient and are transformed from one type of O–D center into another. These reactions affect the compensation of unintentional shallow donors by deep acceptors that are passivated by D. Defects involving additional impurities in β-Ga2O3 compete with VGa deep acceptors for D and modify the deuterium-related reactions that occur. The defect reactions that occur when D is introduced by annealing in a D2 ambient appear to be simpler than those observed for other introduction methods and provide a foundation for understanding the D-related reactions that can occur in more complicated situations. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available July 28, 2024
  3. Neutrons generated through charge-exchange9Be (p; ni)9Be reactions, with energies ranging from 0–33 MeV and an average energy of ∼9.8 MeV were used to irradiate conventional Schottky Ga2O3rectifiers and NiO/Ga2O3p-n heterojunction rectifiers to fluences of 1.1–2.2 × 1014cm−2. The breakdown voltage was improved after irradiation for the Schottky rectifiers but was highly degraded for their NiO/Ga2O3counterparts. This may be a result of extended defect zones within the NiO. After irradiation, the switching characteristics were degraded and irradiated samples of both types could not survive switching above 0.7 A or 400 V, whereas reference samples were robust to 1 A and 1 kV. The carrier removal rate in both types of devices was ∼45 cm−1. The forward currents and on-state resistances were only slightly degraded by neutron irradiation.

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  4. The effect of doping in the drift layer and the thickness and extent of extension beyond the cathode contact of a NiO bilayer in vertical NiO/β-Ga2O3 rectifiers is reported. Decreasing the drift layer doping from 8 × 1015 to 6.7 × 1015 cm−3 produced an increase in reverse breakdown voltage (VB) from 7.7 to 8.9 kV, the highest reported to date for small diameter devices (100 μm). Increasing the bottom NiO layer from 10 to 20 nm did not affect the forward current–voltage characteristics but did reduce reverse leakage current for wider guard rings and reduced the reverse recovery switching time. The NiO extension beyond the cathode metal to form guard rings had only a slight effect (∼5%) in reverse breakdown voltage. The use of NiO to form a pn heterojunction made a huge improvement in VB compared to conventional Schottky rectifiers, where the breakdown voltage was ∼1 kV. The on-state resistance (RON) was increased from 7.1 m Ω cm2 in Schottky rectifiers fabricated on the same wafer to 7.9 m Ω cm2 in heterojunctions. The maximum power figure of merit (VB)2/RON was 10.2 GW cm−2 for the 100 μm NiO/Ga2O3 devices. We also fabricated large area (1 mm2) devices on the same wafer, achieving VB of 4 kV and 4.1 A forward current. The figure-of-merit was 9 GW  cm−2 for these devices. These parameters are the highest reported for large area Ga2O3 rectifiers. Both the small area and large area devices have performance exceeding the unipolar power device performance of both SiC and GaN. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available July 1, 2024
  5. NiO/β-Ga 2 O 3 vertical rectifiers exhibit near-temperature-independent breakdown voltages ( V B ) of >8 kV to 600 K. For 100 μm diameter devices, the power figure of merit ( V B ) 2 / R ON , where R ON is the on-state resistance, was 9.1 GW cm −2 at 300 K and 3.9 GW cm −2 at 600 K. By sharp contrast, Schottky rectifiers fabricated on the same wafers show V B of ∼1100 V at 300 K, with a negative temperature coefficient of breakdown of 2 V K −1 . The corresponding figures of merit for Schottky rectifiers were 0.22 GW cm −2 at 300 K and 0.59 MW cm −2 at 600 K. The on–off ratio remained >10 10 up to 600 K for heterojunction rectifiers but was 3 orders of magnitude lower over the entire temperature range for Schottky rectifiers. The power figure of merit is higher by a factor of approximately 6 than the 1-D unipolar limit of SiC. The reverse recovery times were ∼26 ± 2 ns for both types of devices and were independent of temperature. We also fabricated large area, 1 mm 2 rectifiers. These exhibited V B of 4 kV at 300 K and 3.6 kV at 600 K. The results show the promise of using this transparent oxide heterojunction for high temperature, high voltage applications. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available June 15, 2024
  6. There are numerous applications for deep UV AlGaN Light-Emitting Diodes (LEDs) in virus inactivation, air and water purification, sterilization, bioagent detection and UV polymer curing. The long-term stability of these LEDs is also of interest for long-duration space missions such as the Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (LISA), the first gravitational wave detector in space. We review the literature on long-term aging of these devices as a function of drive current, temperature and dc versus pulsed operation. The LEDs typically show a gradual decline in output power (up to 50%) over extended operating times (>100 h) and the rate of decline is mainly driven by current and temperature. Experimentally, the degradation rate is dependent on the cube of drive current density and exponentially on temperature. The main mechanism for this decline appears to be creation/migration of point defects. Pre-screening by considering the ratio of band edge-to-midgap emission and LED ideality factor is effective in identifying populations of devices that show long lifetimes (>10,000 h), defined as output power falling to 70% of the initial value.

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  7. In this work, we demonstrate the rejuvenation of Ti/4H-SiC Schottky barrier diodes after forward current-induced degradation, at room temperature and in a few seconds, by exploiting the physics of high-energy electron interactions with defects. The diodes were intentionally degraded to a 42% decrease in forward current and a 9% increase in leakage current through accelerated electrical stressing. The key feature of our proposed rejuvenation process is very high current density electrical pulsing with low frequency and duty cycle to suppress any temperature rise. The primary stimulus is, therefore, the electron wind force, which is derived from the loss of the momentum of the high energy electrons upon collision with the defects. Such defect-specific or “just in location” mobilization of atoms allows a significant decrease in defect concentration, which is not possible with conventional thermal annealing that requires higher temperatures and longer times. We show evidence of rejuvenation with additional improvement in leakage current (16%) and forward current (38%) beyond the pristine condition. Transmission electron microscopy, geometric phase analysis, Raman spectroscopy, and energy dispersive x-ray-spectroscopy reveal the enhancement of defects and interfaces. The ultrafast and room temperature process has the potential for rejuvenating electronic devices operating in high power and harsh environmental conditions. 
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  8. Abstract Films of α-Ga2O3 (Sn) grown by Halide Vapor Phase Epitaxy (HVPE) on sapphire with starting net donor densities in the range 5×1015- 8.4×1019 cm-3 were irradiated at room temperature with 1.1 MeV protons to fluences from 1013 -1016 cm-2. For the lowest doped samples, the carrier removal rate was ~35 cm-1 at 1014 cm-2 and ~1.3 cm-1 for 1015 cm-2 proton fluence. The observed removal rate could be accounted for by the introduction of deep acceptors with optical ionization energies of 2 eV, 2.8 eV and 3.1 eV. For doped samples doped at 4x1018 cm-3, the initial electron removal rate was 5×103 cm-1 for 1015 cm-2 proton fluence and ~300 cm-1 for 1016 cm-2 proton fluence. The same deep acceptors were observed in photocapacitance spectra, but their introduction rate was orders of magnitude lower than the carrier removal rate. For the heaviest doped samples, an electron removal rate could be measured only after irradiation with the highest proton fluence of 1016 cm-2 and was close to that measured for the 4×1018 cm-3 sample after exposure to the same fluence. Possible reasons for the observed behavior are discussed and radiation tolerances of lightly doped α-Ga2O3 films is higher than for similarly doped β-Ga2O3 layers.  
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  9. The energy and beam current dependence of Ga+focused ion beam milling damage on the sidewall of vertical rectifiers fabricated on n-type Ga2O3was investigated with 5–30 kV ions and beam currents from 1.3–20 nA. The sidewall damage was introduced by etching a mesa along one edge of existing Ga2O3rectifiers. We employed on-state resistance, forward and reverse leakage current, Schottky barrier height, and diode ideality factor from the vertical rectifiers as potential measures of the extent of the ion-induced sidewall damage. Rectifiers of different diameters were exposed to the ion beams and the “zero-area” parameters extracted by extrapolating to zero area and normalizing for milling depth. Forward currents degraded with exposure to any of our beam conductions, while reverse current was unaffected. On-state resistance was found to be most sensitive of the device parameters to Ga+beam energy and current. Beam current was the most important parameter in creating sidewall damage. Use of subsequent lower beam energies and currents after an initial 30 kV mill sequence was able to reduce residual damage effects but not to the point of initial lower beam current exposures.

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