Optical and Micro-Structural Characterization of MBE Grown Indium Gallium Nitride Polar Quantum Dots

  • Rami El Afandy

Student thesis: Master's Thesis


Gallium nitride and related materials have ushered in scientific and technological breakthrough for lighting, mass data storage and high power electronic applications. These III-nitride materials have found their niche in blue light emitting diodes and blue laser diodes. Despite the current development, there are still technological problems that still impede the performance of such devices. Three-dimensional nanostructures are proposed to improve the electrical and thermal properties of III-nitride optical devices. This thesis consolidates the characterization results and unveils the unique physical properties of polar indium gallium nitride quantum dots grown by molecular beam epitaxy technique. In this thesis, a theoretical overview of the physical, structural and optical properties of polar III-nitrides quantum dots will be presented. Particular emphasis will be given to properties that distinguish truncated-pyramidal III-nitride quantum dots from other III-V semiconductor based quantum dots. The optical properties of indium gallium nitride quantum dots are mainly dominated by large polarization fields, as well as quantum confinement effects. Hence, the experimental investigations for such quantum dots require performing bandgap calculations taking into account the internal strain fields, polarization fields and confinement effects. The experiments conducted in this investigation involved the transmission electron microscopy and x-ray diffraction as well as photoluminescence spectroscopy. The analysis of the temperature dependence and excitation power dependence of the PL spectra sheds light on the carrier dynamics within the quantum dots, and its underlying wetting layer. A further analysis shows that indium gallium nitride quantum dots through three-dimensional confinements are able to prevent the electronic carriers from getting thermalized into defects which grants III-nitrides quantum dot based light emitting diodes superior thermally induced optical properties compared to other nanostructures. Excitation power dependent PL measurements reveal an increase in the excitonic confinements and hence higher quantum efficiencies compared to lower dimensional nanostructures. Finally it is argued that such characteristics allows quantum dots based InGaN structures to become potentially a strong candidate for high quantum efficiency white solid-state light emitting diodes and ultra-violet/blue laser diode operating at room temperature.
Date of AwardJul 7 2011
Original languageEnglish (US)
Awarding Institution
  • Computer, Electrical and Mathematical Sciences and Engineering
SupervisorBoon Ooi (Supervisor)

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