B diffusion measurements are used to probe the basic nature of self-interstitial point defects in Ge. We find two distinct self-interstitial forms—a simple one with low entropy and a complex one with entropy∼ 30 k at the migration saddle point. The latter dominates diffusion at high temperature. We propose that its structure is similar to that of an amorphous pocket—we name it a morph. Computational modeling suggests that morphs exist in both self-interstitial and vacancylike forms, and are crucial for diffusion and defect dynamics in Ge, Si, and probably many other crystalline solids.
American Physical Society
8 Apr 2013
Volume: 110 Issue: 15 Pages: 155501
Physical review letters