The authors investigate quantitatively the self-organization of step bunching instability during epitaxy of Si on vicinal Si(001). They show that growth instability evolution can be fitted by power laws L ∼ t α and A ∼ tβ (where L is the correlation length and A is the instability amplitude) with critical exponents α ∼ 0.3 and β ∼ 0.5 in good agreement with previous studies and well reproduced by kinetic Monte Carlo simulation. They demonstrate that the main phenomenon controlling step bunching is the anisotropy of surface diffusion. The microscopic origin of the instability is attributed to an easier adatom detachment from SA step, which can be interpreted as a pseudoinverse Ehrlich-Schwoebel barrier [J. Appl. Phys. 37, 3682 (1967); J. Chem. Phys. 44, 1039 (1966)].
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)